When God called us into ministry, few would say that problems weren’t anticipated. The truth is, we don’t have to go around like Sherlock Holmes to find them.
However, many times the difference between the problems we expected and what the realities are becomes overwhelming.
The following list is by no means exhaustive, but should at least help give a reality check. This list is not to be interpreted to discourage anyone from responding to God’s call, rather it should be more understood as “counting the cost” of discipleship.
1. Just because God has called you, you must be right.
One of the things that is often overlooked is the fact that even Solomon had advisers. The less experience we have, the more we need input from those who have already walked that trail.
“The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice.” Proverbs 12:15
2. Everyone that opposes you is an enemy.
Walking into a ministry position with a “them versus us” attitude will only become a self-fulfilling prophecy. This is closely related to #1.
3. I shouldn’t be having these problems if this is God’s will.
It is true that some problems are a result of our own fault. In that case, we need to repent, seek reconciliation and correct the issue.
However, not all problems have that as a root cause. Look at what Paul said in 2 Corinthians 6:3-10:
3 We put no stumbling block in anyone’s path, so that our ministry will not be discredited. 4 Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; 5 in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; 6 in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; 7 in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8 through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; 9 known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; 10 sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.
Problems are one of the things that God uses to form our character.
How we respond under the pressure and stress of problems is more important than the problem itself.