We’ve all been there …
God shows you one thing, you are excited about what He has shown you and then you set out to try to accomplish what He has shown you but then things don’t seem to align with that vision you saw.
Maybe you had a vision where you were ministering to a crowd of people but it’s been 8 years and counting now but you haven’t been able to gather a hundred people yet! Or you saw yourself traveling the world and sharing God’s word with several people, but after several years, it feels like the doors of international ministry are shut against you.
You might have started wondering “what exactly is wrong with me?”, ” did I miss the call?” or “did I over exaggerate what God called me to do?”
More often than not, it is not that you over exaggerated what God called you to do. But here is what I will recommend you do.
1) Hold That Vision Tightly
The most important thing at this point is for you not to lose sight of the vision; no matter what is happening around you. remember that we were not designed to function by sight. We were not built to function by what we see in the natural
… for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
(2 Cor 4:18)
So the seemingly delay in the manifestation of the vision that you see right now is only temporal. Hence, you want to hold that vision strong on your inside. And if you do that long enough, it would not be long before that vision will cause the required circumstances for its manifestation to come up.
However, if you lose sight of the vision because you are becoming too concerned about what is happening or not happening around you right now, you will end up magnifying your current realities. And at the end of the day, you might end up counting more years after years without making significant progress.
And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. (Hab 2:2-3)
2) Consider Your Divine Positioning
And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there. (1 Kings 17:2-4)
Soon after the famine began because of the rain that he stopped, the word of the Lord came to Elijah. Since God always takes care of His own, He had to tell His prophet where to go and enjoy divine supply. You will notice that the Lord was specific about the brook Elijah was to go to.
He didn’t say he should go to any brook that was not dry yet. He didn’t ask him to go to the nearest brook either! Rather, there was a specific brook he was to go to. It is also interesting to note that the Lord said He had commanded the raven to feed Elijah “there”
Dear minister, there is a “there” in ministry. If you are not in your “there” you will be wasting time and would most likely struggle. You have to understand that the fact that the city is close to you or is densely populated doesn’t mean it is the place of your ministry assignment.
I have related with a lot of ministers over the years who attest to how just a change in location or position turned things around in their ministries. So you need to be clear where exactly God has sent you to and be sure that you are in the place of your assignment.
Imagine that John the Baptist was a minister in this generation, do you think he would have willfully gone to the desert? Or if he had to choose the place of his ministry, do you think he would have gone all the way to the River Jordan? Yet, because that was the place of his divine assignment, people traveled to meet him there.
3) Become Aware Of Divine Timing
In the same breadth with knowing your divine positioning in ministry, you need to be aware of God’s timing for your assignment. John’s ministry was designed to precede Jesus’ ministry in God’s calendar. So if John had waited a few more years, he may have missed his divine assignment.
You see, there are things that will just happen at a specific time in ministry. It doesn’t matter how much you push or fuss about it. It doesn’t matter how long you talk in tongues about it, know that certain things will not happen until a specific time of your assignment.
For example, there was a time in God’s calendar when the Israelites should come out of bondage. While they may have prayed to make it shorter, they would have been praying themselves out of His perfect will for them.
However, while God may have specific times in His calendar when things are supposed to happen or “when you are supposed to blow in ministry”, what you do from the moment you begin the ministry or start pursuing the call is what determines whether or not you will even blow!
4) Make The Most Of This Time.
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: (1 Pet 5:6)
There are two things you need to note in the scripture above:
1) The bible says to humble yourself before the Lord and He will exalt you in due time. That means there is a “due time” for every exaltation. There is a due time to lift you up.
2) The prerequisite for the lifting in due time is what you do in the time preceding the due time!
In other words, while there is a due time for God to lift you up, whether or not He does that is determined by what you do in the interval before that due season.
The same can be said about ministry dear pastor. God may have determined that you will grow to a thousand members in the fifth year of the ministry. But that increase will depend greatly on your faithfulness in the first 4 years. What you do from now till your due season will have a great impact on that day of increase.
If you get discouraged about the 12 people you are leading now, you are most likely going to rub yourself of the thousands you could be leading tomorrow. You might be in your interval now. This might be the season of preparing for the due timing. Whatever season this is for you, what are you doing now? Don’t make light of this season. Don’t make light of this phase.
It’s like raising a child. Every moment of that child’s development matters. There are times you will lose and will never have them again.
For some of you, this might be the time you have to hit the street hard and make an impact that will set you up for the increase you dream of!
As a pastor, this might be the season where you have to go on one-on-one evangelism to win and invite people over to church because a time is coming that you may not be able to do that. Not because you would become bigger than that but because God probably has more responsibilities for you to handle at that time.
So while you are waiting for the “big break” and the manifestation of what you have seen in your inner chambers, don’t waste this waiting time. This is about one of the best times you have to lay a solid foundation for the future of your ministry. Don’t waste it feeling like something is wrong with you because things aren’t working at the pace you envisaged.
Concentrate, focus and watch God take you one step after the other into the fulfillment of His calling for your life and ministry.
I hope this has been a blessing for you. If you have any questions whatsoever, feel free to ask in the comments and I will be glad to answer them. And until I see you again, don’t give up on your dream to build that ministry that God has called you into because this world you and I live in needs that ministry, that assignment that only you were born to carry out.
Which of these do you perceive you need to work on now?