No doubt there are many answers to that question raised in the title. Like many of us, our minds immediately think about the gift we were given for ministry; evangelism, preaching, teaching, and others. But they are not the first reason we were called. There is, of course, our salvation and the relationship we have with God through the Lord Jesus. Let’s read again what Mark says about Jesus calling the twelve disciples:
“And He appointed twelve (whom He also named apostles [messengers]) so that they might be with Him and He might send them out to preach” (Mark 3:14).
First, we should focus on the phrase, “so that they might be with Him.” The word “with” in this verse means “to be in close association with another person.” How this worked out with each disciple was different. On one occasion, only Peter, James and John went with Jesus up on the mountain and saw His glory (9:2-8). John was the only one who “leaned back against Jesus” (John 13:25; 21:20). The point is that Jesus wanted all of them to live the rest of their lives in this “close association” because it would have a direct impact on their ministry.
It is no different for you and me. If we expect to be “sent….out to preach,” or any other form of ministry, there must be this nearness to the Lord. Remember that Barnabas and Saul were “sent out by the Holy Spirit” as they “were worshipping the Lord and fasting” (Acts 13:2, 4). EVERY OTHER RELATIONSHIP IS SECONDARY! Are you experiencing this kind of relationship with the Lord? If you think you are, test every other priority by your walk and time with the Lord to see if He really is first.
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