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July 15, 2011

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7 Benefits of Bi-Vocational Ministry

by Justin Williams
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I have been serving in paid full-time ministry for the past four years and I have loved being able to dedicate all of my time to ministry, but now I will be stepping back into the work force to become a bi-vocational pastor (There is no such thing as part-time ministry).  I have multiple opportunities to stay in full-time ministry; however I feel God is leading me in this direction.  I have weighed the advantages and disadvantages of both, and I have decided that in this stage of my ministry I will be more effective at being missional if I’m actually in the trenches working with everyday people who are struggling with every day issues.  That doesn’t mean you can’t do that in full-time ministry, but for me, it was a struggle.

So I just want to throw out “7 Benefits of Bi-Vocation Ministry” that I have compiled after prayer and time in God’s Word.  These are not intended to discredit full or part-time ministry,  I am only speaking from my personal experience.  This list should not be used to determine God’s calling on your life.  It is simply a list of ideas to consider as you prayerfully seek God’s will for your life.  I should also note that with church growth God could lead me back into full-time ministry, but for now I am excited about the opportunities to minister in a working field.

  1. Boldness to minister as the Holy Spirit leads.
  2. Easier to say “no” to over demanding request.
  3. Removes you from a pedestal of perfection.
  4. Allows adequate time to engage the culture and discover relevant issues.
  5. Relieves overbearing pressure of financial dependance upon the church.
  6. Ability to build relationships with non-Christians.
  7. Freedom to manage your time accordingly.

What benefits or disadvantages do you see with bi-vocational ministry?  I would love to hear your thoughts. Please comment below.

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1 Comment Post a comment
  1. Jul 31 2011

    I was a bi-vocational missionary for seven years, not out of choice but out of necessity. Then when we moved to different location, my wife began working since all our kids were in school and I focused all my attention on ministry. That was a great time. Then the beginning of last year I took a part time job while looking for a new ministry and have had to keep the job, even while in my new ministry, again out of necessity. I know have a renewed respect for those who God calls to be bi-vocational. It is really hard work and it is hard to juggle both work and ministry. I am hoping this is only temporary for us, because to be quite honest, I am getting wore out.

    Reply

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