Why I Chose Ministry Over Politics and Medicine

[My friend asked me why it was I felt called to go into ministry. With my background, I had been determined to either become a lawyer or a doctor (Otorhinolaryngologist), and then run for public office in legislative politics. He asked me why I chose ministry over these options, and my response is below.]

Luis:

I always find that curious when ppl decide thats what they want to do. Its a big commitment. It’s not like saying mmmm im going to go be a lawyer. Did u feel the conviction so strong?

Leonard:

It really is a question of investment and returns. Could I have been a lawyer and argued significant cases before a court? Sure. Could I have then used my prestige to raise funds and become a politician? Absolutely. I believe God has gifted me with the traits necessary for such work; systematic thinking, rational argumentation, charisma, articulated speaking, etc. The same of a doctor. I could have labored through medical school and made a ton of money. Yet what is the return? I looked at it like this. How do I weigh working to change something like worldly law when I can in fact exposit God’s Law. How minimal the law of man, regardless of the nation, when compared to God’s law. For one, His law is infinite, whereas one day the Constitution will in fact be rubbish. In addition, what of being a doctor? I could heal the sick and save lives, but how does that compare? The same with the law. I could save a man and add years to his life, yet how much greater to add not simply years, but an eternity! I could alleviate the pains of people as a doctor, but I cannot grant them Joy! Happiness, sure. But true joy that depends on no physical position or lack of suffering? Hardly! So what if I make little money. I am investing in God’s kingdom. If I really truely believe The Gospel saves. That Jesus really does change people, and saves them, and fulfills them purpose, how empty the laws of man and the medicines of the physician! Are they important? Yes. But if I compared them to God’s Law and His Healing and Grace, they pale in comparison. they are dead like weeds.

So then. Where would it be most reasonable to invest my talents as a student and a servant? I could go nowhere else, through reason and conviction, then to serve God by serving his children. By reminding them that their ultimate purpose is not a government or their body and its health, But God’s Kingdom, and being one with the Body of Believers. Being wedded to Christ. I had to ask if I wanted to lead people to the purpose of their existence, or add to the workings of man’s hands. So it was one of conviction and reason and investment. Seemed most logical, reasonable, and honest to invest in something eternal.

And a closing word: I regret it not one bit. Such service has given me treasures that, when compared to man’s finances and riches and goods, makes them seem like sludge and filth. I am rich beyond any condition of the world. That is TRUE wealth.

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3 thoughts on “Why I Chose Ministry Over Politics and Medicine

  1. Wow, I am simply astonished by your humbleness… May God bless you, your family, ministry and everything you do.
    I know this is just a post from you and not an open discussion, yet, I do have some questions: what about those who believe that their calling is to be a teacher, a doctor, or a lawyer? Can I also say that those “jobs” are ways of investing in people’s lives for eternity? I mean… after all, we do need teachers, doctors and lawyers, right? So, do we really separate both worlds or is it really one (spiritual and secular)? In other words, is a calling to be a doctor or any other profession just as “spiritual” as being a minister of the Word of God?

    Thank you and God bless.

    • “what about those who believe that their calling is to be a teacher, a doctor, or a lawyer? Can I also say that those “jobs” are ways of investing in people’s lives for eternity?”

      An excellent question! The short answer would be this: Every Christian is really called to two professions. One takes absolute importance and actually shapes the entire purpose of the second. In short, every single Christian is called to be a missionary. For some, this may draw mental images of sharing the gospel in the African Bush, or the jungles of South America, but that would do injustice to our primary goal as Christians. In Matthew 28, Jesus clear sends us on mission. We are to go into the world and preach the gospel and make disciples. He was not simply speaking to a clergy or priesthood. He was speaking of the mission of every single Christian.

      So primarily, our essential occupation is to be that of a Missionary. What then follows is our second profession: earthly occupations. The Church must absolutely have doctors, lawyers, and teachers. By being doctors, lawyers, and teachers, Christians come in contact with individuals whom they may not normally come in contact with, providing opportunities to share the Gospel. Every Christian then literally has a mission field in the place of their world-field. If all Christians were doctors, who would penetrate the mission field of teachers and students? If all were clergy, who would penetrate the mission field of lawyers and clients, let alone the secular workforce? Also remember that the Church is a Body, it brings collectively the skills and talents of various parts to most maximize the Body’s purpose (sharing the gospel). Lawyers may help churches constitute and contract themselves. Teachers may aid in education of children, youth, and adults. Doctors may open their talents towards medical missions. Etc, etc.

      And if everyone were clergy, who would financially support pastors and full-time traveling missionaries?! Even then, Paul supported himself as a tent-maker. We have a privilege to pool together financial resources to support a pastor full-time. It really is a blessing. Even if this blessing were not available, I would remain a pastor and support myself with a secondary occupation.

      And with being a pastor, it is by all means a “Calling.” I could simply spiritually and rationally see no better place for my resources to be invested then in individuals like you! The very extension of my resources has this purpose: To teach people who are not pastors how to be On Mission for God. How to live the life of a missionary. If everyone were Pastors, I couldn’t even do my job as a Pastor! Nor could we effectively witness the world by penetrating all these areas, and nor could we financially support the efforts of the Church!

      So by all means some are called to be Doctors, Lawyers, and Teachers! Godly Christian ones at that! They have a missions field unavailable to a Pastor, and it becomes the Pastor’s essential function to train and equip these individuals to penetrate their areas of darkness with the illuminating love of the Gospel!

      The two exist complimentary, and the Pastor simply reminds the laymen and women that they are in fact called to the very same primary occupation as a pastor: They are all called to be missionaries. They just so happen to do this primary occupation in the mission field of their earthly vocation.

      Thanks for your compliments as well. To God be the Glory.

      God’s Blessings,


      Leonard O Goenaga

      • Thank you so much for your response.

        I haven’t read everything in this website but little by little I’ll surely be doing so.

        May God keep guiding you and blessing your family as you walk in His will.

        Rosa

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