In today's society, it is not enough to have a calling. The call must come equipped with one of two options. Either you are called and have the skill set, or you are called and there are people around you who have the skill set you need and a desire to help you. If you have both, then you just may qualify for Ministry Hall of Fame. There are many of us in the Body of Christ who have a desire to do something to help the hurting and lost. Yet, most of us are not in the race or barely running at all because of what we believe it costs to participate. We have great ideas for ministry, and yet most of us find it difficult to get in a lane and run with great expectation. What's causing the spiritual athletes to fall by the way side or not even sign up for the race?
Here is one answer. Sometimes rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar's is more than we are intending to pay. (Matt. 22:21) Before we get into the gifting and the skills of working our callings, let’s discuss the cost to obey. If you ever have an opportunity, research some of your popular secular companies and identify areas they have applied biblical principles. Yep! They do it too. Sometimes the world is better than the Church itself at obeying biblical principles, specifically this one.
The Church motivates us to get involved. However, there is a price to getting involved. You may think you know this but many ministries fail because of their lack of knowledge of the cost of getting started and maintaining. Follow me for a bit. Getting involved takes place in two worlds for the Believer, the spiritual and the natural. In doing so, your checklist for God is not the only checklist you need to accomplish the plan of heaven here in the physical realm. You see, Caesar rules the physical, and Caesar can and will deny you the authority to operate if circumstances allow it. It is not enough to be called, so you have to research what it takes to operate your spiritual assignment in the natural territory. In case you have not figured it out yet, I'm talking about the infamous dream killer– administrative duties also known as paperwork.
Matthew 22:21 tells us that Jesus said "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's; and to God the things that are God's." Growing up, I understood this verse to mean a separation of responsibilities between the natural and the spiritual. They are not the same therefore do not operate the same or under the same authority. So, keep these things separate. The fact that it was Jesus who said it also said to me that rendering the things of Caesar was a not a supernatural occurrence. You have to be intentional about getting Caesar his things just as much as we are intentional about giving God what belongs to Him.
If we look at Romans 13, Paul explains in verses 1-4 a few spiritual rules in regards to operating in the natural realm in accordance to appropriate authorities. As believers, we know that God is the ultimate authority over all. Yet, even God honors the order of authority that He himself puts into place. Verse one tells us, "Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God." Well, that's pretty straightforward. We have to operate in compliance to Caesar, not an allegiance. Our allegiance is still in God which is why we are complying with the authority or system that has been established by Him. We have to do the paperwork AND be about our Father's business. Paul clearly tells us the results of either decision in the next two verses.
Verse two explains, "Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves." Well, that's pretty self-explanatory. We now know what happens if we do not operate in compliance. Verse three continues to say, "For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended”. Now, here is where things become really clear in verses four and five. "For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.”
We should have an ethical mindset to operate with integrity. This frees us from having to look over our shoulders for the authorities (IRS, state offices, church members, etc,) or create answers (excuses) to business inquiries on the fly when questioned by them as well. And even if we are not in position to set up everything in one fell swoop, we can plan out our responsibilities in order to accomplish them over time and responsibly. This method not only allows us to operate with a clear conscience but also gives us space to do the thing we love in between the dreaded paperwork. As an added bonus, once we identify our administrative needs, we are basically able to identify our strengths and weaknesses in areas. Meaning, you can begin to look into your circle of support to ask for help from those who are skilled to support us with specific duties. A word of caution! Asking people to do things that are very easy for us to do can be a turnoff for future assistance. It can come across as wanting all the glory without the work. So, we should be as deliberate and specific as we can when asking for assistance in the vision building stage.
As you know, we believe in application of the biblical principles we teach. Ready to get started? Keep up with us for the next few weeks as we share strategies to getting these things done. As an indication of how easy we are going to make this, here is your first tip. Go to the store and purchase a journal for your business. It doesn’t matter what it looks like as long as it is bound where papers cannot be removed. (If you’re like me, you’re going to misplace paperwork at some point!) It is only for your business and nothing else. By the next post, you should have at least one entry:
#1 Business Journal purchased Date Cost Method of Payment (MOP)
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Just a little birdy and fish about the Father's business. Helping to better the world one blog at a time.