If I wrote this paper 20 years ago while I was attending North Central Bible College, my thoughts on what I believed was the personal call on my life and of my plans for ministry after college would have created an essay that is significantly different than what I am writing here. My interpretation of a calling was probably like most of the students that attended NCBC, that it is a divine mission placed on your life, meaning that your life is dedicated to the furthering of the Gospel through the means of full-time career minded ministry. As a very typical Assembly of God church attendee that grew up in the church, my understanding was that this calling would take on the form of a staff pastor at a local Assembly of God church, such as a
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From that point a seed was planted and I firmly believed that a ministry calling was on my life, and that I was placed on a non-negotiable ministry path. As I was so familiar with the biblical stories that showcases how God uses the rejected and untrained for his purposes, I too believed that if God choose me for ministry, His enablement would be there. As I continued to be heavily involved in my church, my talent as a violinist and my accomplishments through the Teen Talent (Fine Arts Festival) contest brought me to the public stage, and it was naturally assumed by my church's leadership and the entire congregation that I was well suited and destined for ministry. Needless to say, my pastor would often proudly say that I was going into ministry, and the spotlight was a source of excitement for me, and I embraced it. The decision had been made.
My understanding of ministry was only within the confines of a single large church with a large membership and the programs and budgets that a church of that size would have. Singing Christmas Trees, Easter Pageants, large children's and youth programs, and various large community events gave me a very one-sided from-the-stage view of ministry. Playing an offertory was to a crowd of hundreds of people and the level of acceptance from them was exhilarating. In their support they quickly overlooked any weaknesses that I had. Unfortunately no one, including the church leadership, acknowledged or