Welcome to the ULC Minister's Network

Rev. Dr. Stephen J. "Chappy" Fuller

Have you been called into Pastoral Ministry late in life?

  • Have you been called into Pastoral Ministry late in life? Share your story...the good, the bad and the ugly!

    Here is an illustration. A young teenager experienced God's calling on his life at age 14 to be a Pastor. Through the process of telling family and friends, he was given the advice to not go into ministry. Why? Because of the hardships, the lack of money that could be earned, and the bullseye target that Satan would place one him should he follow through. He decided to run...like Jonah. He avoided his true calling at every turn. Thirteen years later, he met, fell in love and married a young lady. He only had mediocre success in most of the things he did for vocation, and was miserable. The young lady was not called to be the wife of a Pastor, but to be an executive in a Health Insurance Company. The had many blessings together including two wonderful children. But things were never quite right. Their relationship was lonely most of the time. He was drawn to church and she was drawn to business. Sixteen years later, while siting in a little neighborhood church, the Pastor of the church resigned from the pulpit. The church, which was at a membership of 525 members during it's "hay-day" had dwindled down to 18 members. They needed someone to step up, and all of a sudden the now middle-aged man could not deny the voice any further. It was deafening. This was the moment that God had planned to get him back to alignment with his calling. Amazing! Truly amazing! Over 30 years later, He had the man at the point where I could run no longer. Jonah was in the belly of the fish when his direction got changed and so was the man's! God used the man's gifts in that church to create a library, web site, promote/advertise, lead praise and worship time, open and teach 6 Sunday school classes, organize the church finances, take a leadership role in finding a trained Pastor, and opened the avenues for the man to go to seminary. The church grew from 18 back to 85 in attendance. The man decided to "test" the waters so to speak, once again. This time, everybody was on board. His wife's comments were, "well it's about time!" However, God does not call a man and wife separately...he calls them together to help each other, making them into "oneness" in Him. The man had married outside of his calling and within a year, the pressures of ministry were to much for the wife and she left him for someone else. She was not called to be a Pastors wife, but the wife of a businessman. It was putting a square peg into a round whole so to speak. Satan had his way, and they were easy pickings! Since the divorce, this man's ministry has gone to the streets and he has led over 100 people to the Lord. But he is alone. He wonders what could have been if he had heeded that still small voice when he was 14. The fruit is there, but so is the divorce. Oh to be 14 again!

  • Jay Redding likes this
  • Dr. Vincent Barla
    Dr. Vincent Barla It is really wonderful. I have come across similar reallife stories in india too. There is a calling from within myself too but that is not very clear to me yet. May be time may come sooner or later.
    March 30, 2010
  • Kay Lee
    Kay Lee I'm almost 66 years old. 11 years ago the spirit asked, "Will you do this for me?" Without even questioning 'What', I, as always, said yes. It turned out to be a prison ministry working with 3000 prisoners, their families and many of their guards - Me, w...  more
    March 29, 2010
  • Rev Robert Fuller
    Rev Robert Fuller It's been my experience that God does things in his time, not ours, according to his will.

    The time that most may feel was lost by this young man, was not lost at all, he was being groomed with experiences that he would of never had as a pastor, ye...  more
    March 29, 2010