ten pieces of silver

Today's devotion from Judges 17 & 18.

In Judges 17 and 18, we encounter one of my favorite verses for ministry.This account starts with a sharp departure from the account of Samson. In these verses, we meet an odd little family.

Apparently, Micah took his mother's money, but confesses. In celebration, they delve into idolatry. This family is spiritually hungry, but completely unaware of who God truly is, how He is worshipped, or what he desires from those who would worship Him.

Micah thinks his luck has changed when a real honest-to-goodness Levite shows up. They offer the Levite a salary and a change of clothes to be their own little home preacher boy. The Levite jumped at the chance, but was just as ignorant about God as Micah. In 18:20, when another opportunity comes along, the priest steals the household idols and ephod to take to his new mission field.

This account speaks to me because it is a reminder. I've encountered more than one church that wanted to hire a preacher instead of call a pastor. What's the difference? In those congregations that simply want a preacher, many are spiritual, but not necessarily seeking God. They don't want to be challenged. They don't want to grow. They simply want to perpetuate what has been. In two or three years, that preacher will become frustrated, and that's perfectly fine. He will leave, they'll find someone else to give 10 pieces of silver and a shirt, and they'll never skip a beat.

I never want to be satisfied with 10 shekels and a shirt. I never want to see ministry primarily as a source of employment. God is the end, not the means to an end. I don't want to use my calling as a way to get something, and God forbid I ever be content with spirituality instead of passionately pursuing godliness.