What Does a Call to Ministry Mean for my Future Spouse?
“If you are called to ministry, your wife will also be called to ministry.” That’s what one wise old church member told me when I was a single college student called to preach the gospel. He did not mean that both I and my future bride would have to work vocationally in a church. What he communicated with me in the ensuing conversation was that the only person I should consider marrying was someone who was supportive of God’s calling on my life.
When a man and woman make a lifelong marriage covenant, they become one flesh (Genesis 2:24; Mark 10:8). A one flesh couple can move in one direction and grow together, or move in opposite directions and drift apart. If you stood up right now and walked with your feet moving in the same direction, you would go somewhere because your body is working with one goal moving towards one destination. If you stood up right now and pointed your right foot east and your left foot west, you would only be able to take a couple of steps before falling backwards on the floor! Similarly, the only way you can fulfill the call that God has placed upon your life is if your spouse is called to walk with you in that same direction.
If you are in a dating relationship, engaged to be married, or living the single life waiting for a future spouse, consider how God’s calling on your life will affect your spouse’s life. Ask yourself and your companion a few questions about your relationship with God and each other.
Is this person a Christian? A Christian who intentionally marries a non-Christian is like a car that has monster truck tires on one side and a set of compact tires on the other. You will not be able to serve Christ down the road together if both of your hearts are not rightly fitted with Jesus.
Does this person have the same desire in their heart to reach the world for Jesus as I do? Seeking a spouse that has the same desire to serve God and people is a necessity for an effective ministry and a sustainable marriage. If your future spouse is not currently involved in church or ministry to people, there’s a good chance they don’t have the same passion you do.
Will this relationship help both of us do what God has called us to do? Every Christian is called by God to do something for His Kingdom. You may be a youth pastor and your wife a school teacher. You may be a children’s minister and your husband an electrician. Whatever you and your future spouse choose to do vocationally should help both of you do what God has called you to do.
Seek God’s direction through prayer, and talk about your calling with your future spouse. A spouse who supports God’s calling on your life will be your greatest help in ministry.
Written by Jake Guenrich
Pastor, FBC Walnut Ridge