Before moving to NC, I’d been in full-time professional ministry for nearly five years. Before that, I did what Christians call “tent-make”. The term refers to a dude in the Bible we know as the apostle Paul. When he was in the ancient Greek city of Corinth (the Las Vegas of the ancient first century world), he supported himself by making tents during the week and did church work on the weekends. Tent-making now refers to working a “secular” job to make a living while doing ministry.
The five years I spent in professional ministry were great. But the longer I went, the more uncomfortable I was with the idea of getting paid to preach, especially as the economy started it’s nosedive at the end of 2007. When we knew God was calling us to NC, I knew that I would no longer be in “professional ministry.” Would I still plant churches? Absolutely. Would I still “do ministry”? You betcha.
I just wouldn’t get paid for it.
So how am I tent-making? I’m a hospice chaplain.
(Insert collective gasp from readers here)
Starting tomorrow, I’ll let you in on the typical reactions I get from people as well as what my job is like. And it isn’t what you may think…