August 01, 2007

A Seventeen-year Delay

James 3:1-2

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1


During my first year at college, I thought about becoming a pastor. But then, and for many years after, I found ways to repress those thoughts.

For the rest of my college and university years, I trained to be a history teacher. But instead I entered what I expected would be temporary employment at a bank. After remaining for 17 years in the banking business, I went to seminary and then became a pastor. Some people have told me I should regret having "wasted" nearly two decades working for a financial institution when I could have been working for the Lord.

By standards of pay and title, my "temporary" career at the bank was very successful. As I look back on it now, I see much more important standards: God's timing and God's training. In my college days God knew I wasn't ready to teach, much less to pastor or preach. But God used, among other things, my experiences at the bank to teach me, pastor me, and preach to me, preparing me for work that lay ahead--in God's time.

You may also have questions about the reasons for God's timetable in your life. But when we walk with Christ, God fits the "times of our lives" into a mosaic of discipleship. In the month ahead, I'll share some of the lessons God taught me during my "season" of life in the world of banking.

Jesus, we are sometimes surprised by the seasons that unfold in our personal lives. Help us to learn well the lessons you want to teach us. Open us to your grace and Spirit. Amen.

About the author — Fred Bultman

Fred Bultman began a “second career” as a pastor in 1997, after a first career in the banking business.  He served as pastor to congregations in the U.S. and Canada. In retirement, he continues to enjoy sharing in the ministry of the churches in and around his home in Fremont, Michigan.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!