A High Calling
by Johnny Miller
I was on my knees at a revival when I was 18 at my home church in Indiana. I knew God was calling me to something really special but I had no idea how special. It’s truly amazing how God works. The paths that we go down might take some turns that we wonder about later, but they always lead us to where God intended us to be if we stay in His will and seek His guidance.
I started out working with kids in 1979, and after several years I thought I was getting a huge promotion when asked if I would like to be the new youth leader. I jumped at the chance and really thought that was my calling. Some years later my long time prayers were answered when I was offered a part time youth pastor’s job 500 miles away. Without hesitation my wife and I both felt this was it, my lifetime dream was being fulfilled. The humorous part is that when I arrived at the church, the pastor said to me: “By the way, I need you to revamp the children’s church department.”
That was a shock to me. I thought working with children was behind me when I was “promoted” into youth ministry, but I dove into both ministries and was soon asked to choose between the two. I was working at both and succeeding at neither. The surprising part, however, is that when push came to shove, children’s ministry won out.
That was many years ago, and I share all this to say that it took a long time to realize and discover what God had truly equipped me to be. I remember thinking: “Why do I act so weird? I’m now an adult. My dad never acted like this.” To me, I saw childishness and immaturity, when in fact God had equipped me with an ability to connect with children. For the last sixteen years I’ve been blessed to have the position as a Children’s Pastor, and I have to say it’s much more than a title or career. It’s what God created me to be. What I was missing in youth ministry has been found through working with children.
I believe there are many like me whom God has called and equipped to be children’s pastors, workers, or volunteers. I’ve been blessed to be all three, and I say blessed because I learned so much in each position. The one common denominator, however, is the most important commodity on the earth: children. I didn’t just dream this up. Jesus knew it and shared it with stubborn adults many times who didn’t get how important and special children truly are.
If you have this special love for kids; if you delight in teaching, ministering to, and just being around kids; then you are part of a special group: a group that our churches, denomination, and our world desperately needs. You might be like I was — a little confused about your value or your purpose, but I can assure you, God created you the way you are. Your abilities, talents, and vision come from Him. Perhaps you’ve been given the heart of a kids worker, and believe me, there’s nothing better in this whole wide world.