Friday, 30 October 2015

Your Calling Is Not Your Career's Competition

“I’m not a business man,” Hatashita said. “My heart is in missionary work.”

I read these words today as I learned of the closing of a 55 year-old jewelry business in my community. The full article can be found here. Although the feat of running a successful business for over five decades is enough to make the paper, I was surprised by the humility demonstrated in his words.

Through the money he acquired in running a successful business, he was able to help fund 35 church plants overseas. Truly incredible.

Oftentimes it seems that individuals may feel the tension between vocation and calling. Perhaps you have a passion for missionary work, as this man does, yet find yourself in a day job that is necessary to sustain your family.

I once had a friend ask me about calling. She felt called to work in the business world and yet, with a Christian faith, felt compelled to be in ministry.

“Shouldn’t all Christians be serving in the church?” she genuinely asked.

And my answer was quick, God wants to have people who serve and love him in all spheres of life. Certainly, serve in the church in some capacity. But better yet, be the church, the body of Christ, to those who are in need of love, kindness, generosity, and wisdom around you.

Could this jewelry storeowner have packed it all in to go overseas and start a church? Maybe. It might have grown, impacted people, and been a thriving ministry. But by allowing God to work through his vocation, it seems he was able to fulfill an even deeper, more impactful calling. By placing himself in a position of gaining funds, he was able to actually impact 35 church communities.

Perhaps this story sits so close to my heart because people underestimate the power of financial giving. It seems that finances get a bad rap. Everyone is asking for money, yet you are desperate for experience. It seems that writing a cheque can be seen as a cop out for actually serving. And yet, the financial gift is serving in a capacity that many others can’t.

Would I love to be able to fundraise for our church single-handedly through my personal bank account? Sure. It would put to rest the hard rejections and sometimes awkward conversations that fundraising can bring. But it would also do a disservice to others who God is asking to step into a financial calling. It would remove the opportunity for someone else to open their wallet and pour into the young adults in this city.

So, as I sat reading this article with tears streaming down my face (perhaps in part due to my hormone crazy pregnancy brain), I felt compelled to recognize the calling that one can find in any vocation. Don’t underestimate the power of your generosity. Perhaps you feel like you are stuck in just another job, not actually investing in anything, and don’t have enough time to add another event to your schedule. I ask you, use the resources you have. It is an investment.

This jewelry storeowner did not simply run a successful business and hoard the treasure for himself. He gave, and I guarantee you, in helping to fund 35 churches, his investment has multiplied.

So, what can you give? Where can you invest? Perhaps it is money, maybe time. It could be dedicated prayer or a word of encouragement.

But do invest.

If you are interested in learning more about where you could give a financial investment, there are many great organizations out there. Of course, The Embassy, the young adults church my husband and I pastor, is very close to my heart and a great option if you want to invest in a way that your gift will certainly multiply. To learn more, check out and click on ‘Give’.

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