2 Cor. 3:3
And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
Paul says to look no further than the fruit of the church when seeking a letter of recommendation for Paul’s authority and call. Talk is cheap. However, when those you have discipled begin to walk in the faith and reproduce themselves, there is no greater evidence of the legitimacy of you ministry and call.
When I first started in ministry, I was always the least educated, least qualified, least experienced person in the room. I used to seek the approval of man. I would attempt to avoid conversations about seminary and formal training with peers because I feared they would consider me illegitimate because I had neither. However as the years went on I realized that the legitimacy of my calling and ministry is most evidenced by the fruit that is produced in and through me. Answers to questions like; “how many of your disciples are reproducing?”, “How many are living out the Great Commission?”, became much more significant than where I attended seminary, or what degrees I held. By the time I finished my formal training I could see it for what it was, a tool. My legitimacy in ministry was best evidenced by fruit produced by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, not a certificate or a degree that hangs on my wall.
A few things…
-Remember that the “secret sauce” of ministry is the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. When I am walking in step with Jesus and growing in my own relationship with Him I am in best position to lead others in a healthy way.
-Pleasing man is a fruitless endeavor. People change.
-Don’t buy into the lie that a degree or a certificate makes me legit. The only thing that makes me legit is the gospel and God’s call on my life. Without those I am nothing.
Father Thank you for loving me enough to save me. Thank you for giving me the chance to make a difference in other people’s lives. May I never forget the great privilege it is.