Is Money Keeping You from Answering the Call?
If money and circumstances were not a problem at all, how would you serve the Lord?

Is Money Keeping You from Answering the Call?

by Rob Parker
11/29/16 Ministry and Outreach

Is the Lord calling you to full-time ministry? What’s keeping you from answering the call?

It has been my great pleasure to serve the Lord and His people in full-time occupational ministry since 2006. Like any occupation, ministry has its thrills, challenges, disappointments, and victories. One of the more rewarding parts of my service is that I encounter lots of people trying to discern whether the Lord is calling them into full-time ministry or not. I run alongside them, helping them navigate this difficult and sometimes confusing part of their journey.
I have had hundreds of these conversations; most of them share a similarity—the person is wrestling with the tension between a strong desire to serve the Lord and a set of circumstances that seem to be against them doing so. Their concerns are real and legitimate:

Am I hearing the Lord? What if I’m wrong?
Shouldn’t I just work, make more money, and give?
What about my degree?
I want to be married and have children.
Do I have to move to a different country?
What about my financial debt?
Does this mean I will be poor?

All of our concerns make it hard for us to hear the Lord clearly; they act like a filter, reinterpreting what we hear. When we do hear, we often take what we hear from the Lord and pass it through the filters of expectation, social pressure, tradition, conventional wisdom, and our flesh’s need for predictability and safety. Often all that remains is a tiny fraction of the Lord’s will, and it leaves us dissatisfied, without direction, and confused. When I see this happening I will often ask this question:

If money and circumstances were not a problem at all, how would you serve the Lord?

Almost always the person quickly responds with a clear sense of purpose and direction. As I get them talking about it, they begin to light up with joy and excitement. I can see that the Lord has deposited within them an authentic desire to serve and a real sense of assignment. Through this exercise, I am able to show them that they can and have heard from the Lord; it’s their circumstantial concerns that are confusing them. I think that, in part, this is what Jesus was teaching us in the parable of the sower (Matthew 13, Mark 4, and Luke 8).

Our concerns are many, but in the hundreds of conversations that I have had about full-time ministry, without question, the one I hear the most is financial: how am I going to support myself? I’m not referring to people who have a problem with greed. No—in fact, most people I talk to are willing to be poor in order to serve. What they are asking is, how do I eat; how do I pay for housing; how I do I pay for the basics of life?

I have found that until the money question is answered they have a hard time discerning the Lord’s will and obeying. Until we answer the money question, very few of us will walk out our full-time assignments fully and faithfully.

God has an answer to our money question.

Since the establishment of the priesthood 3500 years ago, the Lord has been providing for laborers. The primary way He does it is through the financial gifts of His people. For example:

  • The priests were supported through the tithe.
  • The prophets were supported through the gifts of individuals.
  • Paul was in financial partnership with the church at Philippi for over 20 years.
    Jesus had a group of people providing for Him and His team (Luke 8:1–3).

Jesus’ ministry had enough money that He appointed Judas to be the treasurer. They had homes and property; Jesus went to Peter’s home on a few occasions, and after the crucifixion Peter had boats and nets to return to. They were not poor or living from one miracle to another; you rarely see them in need.

Jesus Himself said a worker is worthy of his wage. He intends for you to be funded in the assignment He gives you. I take comfort and even satisfaction in knowing what the Lord has called me to and that I am available to do it. When I say available, what I really mean is financially available. When you are properly funded, it makes you available to do the work faithfully, requires the agreement of God’s people, moves His purposes forward, and earns the giver a reward. The great commission belongs to the family of God, not just the full-time worker. God has a financial partnership team for you, and it’s the answer to many of your concerns. In the end, God is most glorified when His workers are fully available.

Experience four days of anointed preaching with Mike Bickle, Bill Johnson, Todd White, Misty Edwards, Stuart Greaves, Corey Russell, and many more, at Onething, Dec. 28–31, in Kansas City. Find out more about Onething »

When have you experienced the joy of giving or receiving gifts to advance God’s kingdom?

The Fully Funded MissionaryTest

Rob Parker


  • Director of Partnership Development

Rob Parker was born again in 1990 through a dramatic encounter with the Lord. In 2006, after 21 years in the marketplace, Rob felt the Lord leading him into full-time ministry. Rob currently serves as director of Partnership Development at the International House of Prayer. Since 2010 Rob has trained over 1,500 missionaries at IHOPKC, around the country, and in the nations to raise their own financial partnership teams. Rob resides in Kansas City with his wife and son. Living nearby are his daughter, son-in-law, and their three children. He is the author of The Fully Funded Missionary and its companion training manual, Partnership Development for the Fully Funded Missionary.

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