Meditation Monday: Career Christianity : New “Spiritual” Middle Class?

Welcome to a world with a new class of Middle Class; the Career Christian.

This is the kind of person who is obsessed with building a career of Christian ministry. Most times this falls into what is called “Five Fold Ministry”, where there are said to be A – Apostles, E – Evangelists, P- Pastors, P- Prophets, T – Teachers.

One should note that the five fold ministry is a young teaching, merely 200 years old. It is said to have rooted from the teaching of Edward Irving, a Scottish Pastor. 1

From my observation, it usually works out in the nomenclature of “My calling” or “My anointing”.

The Career Christian reads a lot. After all, knowledge is power. To sound like any of the Five Fold, you must sound “spiritual”. So you must know names of famous “Christians” and most times these are the same people the Career Christian models him or herself after.

Many of the famous Christians they emulate may or may not be referred to as “God’s Generals”.

A Career Christian is dutiful. It’s not hard to tell that they are fasting or doing morning glory or reading a devotional. They never miss congregation. And most times they start out in a prominent church. If they begin in a “bad church”, they rise through the ranks, from a “better” church to a “better” church.

After some time, they break out.

Now, one can say the Career Christian is of God but when I see a model being replicated by more than one person I begin to think there is a path to “spiritual success”.

The goal of the Career Christian looks like it is about God however, one key thing that stands out is that their message tends to self improvement and enrichment in as much as it is guised as good doctrine.

In the end, when they make it, they own a church, have a group of people who 100% trust them, own properties, drive cars and cannot be said to be poor.

Question :The Career Christian is the new middle class in Kampala. Have you seen one? Are you one?

Some think the career Christian only falls into the five fold ministry, but that is also a misconception.

Career Christianity affects many believers. Many of these take time to attend church programs like “Discipleship” class, where members are encouraged to serve God through their giftings. “Giftings” is a term that loosely translates into “things I am good at”. One may be good at music, leadership, handling money etc. This is only used within the context of the church building.

In my own experience, leadership was the thing. At one of the churches I attended, it was a plan to start out as a small group leader, then become a leader of many groups, progressing until you were a youth pastor and eventually a big pastor.

In fact someone told me that I was on my way to being a pastor.

A lot of the time, when this doesn’t work out, if someone with better leadership skills, or singing skills comes into the group, a bit of competition or jealousy might come up. Many times, one will decide to leave to another place where he has more experience.

However, Career Christianity just plays out in forms of wanting to be noticed.

A good test to see if you are a Career Christian is this. If you are a pastor finally at the top of your Maslow’s Pyramid, or a prophet, or a small group leader or a worship leader and God asks you to forsake it all, drop it, sit at home, get a job, leave the city, would you convince God that He was making a mistake or would you let it go?

Question: If God told you to stop what you thought He sent you to do, would you stop?

The end of the matter is, where is Jesus? Where is the one we call LORD, SAVIOUR, in our sermons, Bible studies, singings, tithings, givings.

Some days you will hear His name. Some days you will not. However, His name has become some sort of fashion label. If you wear it, you are acceptable.

I am not saying we are to go about saying Jesus Jesus Jesus all the time but that’s not a bad idea… And still, that is the name by which men shall be saved. And again, that name makes you accepted in the beloved.

Nonetheless, the name’s new form of label has allowed us to pursue ourselves in the name of Him. Egos have grown under that label. “Me” hovers somewhere near my pursuit of Him in the theological, or in the “churchical”.

There was a time when those in Christ would say, “We are not sufficient for these things”, theirs was a daily recognition of the sufficiency of Christ. Of the clay and of the potter’s hand. If it was pride, theirs was in Him, theirs they even tried to hide “I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows” (2 Cor 12).

Did they submit to what they wanted God to do for them or rather, submitted to God?

An old baptist preacher one time cautioned me and a group of friends. We were all about the Crown Life. He said, however, what about the Cross Life? We thought of Him as an old theologian whose theology’s half life was done but only now do I realise.

For those in Christ, there is a call that always sounds like “with Christ I have been crucified, and live no more do I, and Christ doth live in me; and that which I now live in the flesh–in the faith I live of the Son of God, who did love me and did give himself for me; ” A putting away of ourselves.

Today, it seems it is an enhancing, a glorification, of ourselves. “Look the powers I have.” “Look how my shadow can heal”. Not the kind spoken of in 2 Cor 3:18, but the kind that resembles Saul “a choice youth and goodly, and there is not a man among the sons of Israel goodlier than he–from his shoulder and upward, higher than any of the people.” Who on the outside surpassed but who on the inside knew not how to bow to the name of God.

What is the end of the matter? God is a good God. Christ is our Saviour. However where is He? Yes He lives in you, that is beyond doubt for those in Christ, but where is He for those? A keycard in the hand for your glory? Or the seed of life manifesting his life, shooting forth as a great tree in the soil, which you are.

Question : Where is Christ?

2Co 4:7 And we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us;

Shalom.

1 – Read more about the Five Fold Ministry’s beginnings here.

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14 thoughts on “Meditation Monday: Career Christianity : New “Spiritual” Middle Class?

  1. If I was close tonyou. I wouldn't just shake your hand. I would give you a hug. This is sth I once tried to explain to a group of friends. I couldn't bring it out like u did. Once I joined group and they had prayer teams I wanted to join one, the leader asked me "how hard do you pray?" I said I don't pray hard. I pray simply. That disqualified me. I sat watching for a while. The class was separated, the leaders were after the crown not the cross. Pride and egos were soaring. I wondered what happened to the word that wasn't twisted to meet their wants.......*stands up and applauds* well done

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  2. I am not the most spiritual person but even I sort of see where this is coming from. And it probably explains why we have so many 'men and women of God' giving off some strange aura of power and ability. It breaks my heart to see that many Christians seem to have forgotten from whence their faith originates or should culminate. And so instead of keeping our eyes focused on Christ, we are now sort of focusing on these 'men and women of God' who have sold to us some bogus beliefs.

    Going back to the question 'The Career Christian is the new middle class in Kampala. Have you seen one? Are you one?'

    Heck yes! They are everywhere. And while I will not necessarily say that it is a bad thing, I will also admit that it sort of makes people think that the only way to serve God is by climbing the ranks. So until one is a full church pastor, they will feel insufficient. And this for me is dangerous. As long as someone is serving the Lord with utmost dedication and diligence, climbing the ranks should be the last of one's worries. God may or may not want you to climb the ranks.

    Which brings me to the question 'If God told you to stop what you thought He sent you to do, would you stop?'

    Chances are, a vast majority would not stop for the simple reason that they set their eyes on something and until they attain it, they are incomplete.

    Oh well.

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    1. You said this well - "Heck yes! They are everywhere. And while I will not necessarily say that it is a bad thing, I will also admit that it sort of makes people think that the only way to serve God is by climbing the ranks. So until one is a full church pastor, they will feel insufficient. And this for me is dangerous. As long as someone is serving the Lord with utmost dedication and diligence, climbing the ranks should be the last of one's worries. God may or may not want you to climb the ranks."

      Many people are rank Christians and that, removes Christianity and replaces it with some man made thing for finding glory. Thanks Bernard for your comment.

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  3. Ahahaha unlike Roland, I won't move along swiftly... I know a Pastor, like a Pastor whose church is a rented out restaurant and bar oba a club even. But I know this guy and I can't even. I will have to tell you in person.

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  4. I just wrote a comment which I thought was dope and it disappeared! hehe
    Anyway, I first heard the "What if God asked you to walk away from it?" on campus when a good friend asked me. I guess it is easier for us to notice/to be more honest about our dreams having nothing to do with God when it has nothing to do with church. We forget that we are the same person whether our "ministry" or "gift" or "service" is in Church or outside church. We are all in need of looking into the mirror Christ before we run off identifying people we know who need to hear/read this....lol. Where is Christ?

    As always, excellently written. I thank God for you Nev. 🙂

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