How do You Know if You are Called?

How does a person know if he or she is called to one of these offices in the church? First and foremost, he will feel a divine calling from God. He will find himself burdened to fulfill a certain task. This is much more than simply seeing a need that could be filled. Rather, it is God-given hunger within that compels a person into a certain ministry. If he is truly called of God, he cannot be satisfied until he begins to fulfill his calling. This has nothing to do with being appointed by a man or a committee of people. God is the one who does the calling.

Second, the truly-called person will find himself equipped by God to fulfill his God-given task. Each of the five offices carries with it a supernatural anointing that enables the individual to do what God has called him to do. With the calling comes the anointing. If there is no anointing, there is no calling. One may aspire to function in a certain ministry, attend Bible School for four years educating himself and preparing for that ministry, but without the anointing from God, he has no chance of true success.

Third, he will find that God has opened some door of opportunity for him to exercise his particular gifts. In this way he can prove himself faithful, and eventually he will be entrusted with greater opportunities, responsibilities and gifts.

If a person hasn’t felt a divine inner compulsion and calling to one of the five ministry gifts, or if he isn’t aware of any special anointing to fulfill a God-given task, or if no opportunity has arisen to exercise the gifts he thinks he possesses, that person should not attempt to be something God has not called him to be. Rather, he should work to be a blessing among his local church body, his neighborhood, and at his workplace. Even though he isn’t called to the “five-fold” ministry, he is called to serve using the gifts God has given him, and he should strive to prove himself faithful.

Although Scripture mentions five ministry gifts, this does not mean that every person who stands in a certain office will have an identical ministry. Paul wrote that “varieties of ministries” exist (1 Cor. 12:5), making variations between ministers who stand in the same office possible. Furthermore, there seem to be various levels of anointing resting upon those in these offices, so we could further categorize each office by degree of anointing. For example, there are some teachers that seem to be more anointed in certain ways than other teachers. The same is true of the other ministry gifts. I personally believe that any minister can do things that will result in an increased anointing upon his ministry, such as prove himself faithful over a period of time and deeply consecrate himself to God.