Is Trading an Option for Bivocational Ministry?

I’ve been in bi-vocational ministry for over a decade now, which means in addition to doing pastoral work ministry work of some kind, I’m also doing other things to round out the income and fill in the rest of the gaps. I’ve done quite a few different things over the years to do this.

I’ve done professional speaking between my vocational pastoring and transitional pastoring. It works very well in one sense because it is quite lucrative, and if I didn’t hate traveling so much, I’d probably still be doing it. I have written some books and spun off some courses from those books, and that has been from time to time quite lucrative. It’s actually an area I could probably do a lot more on. I’ve done affiliate marketing. I have done marketing for other speakers and other industries, and still tend to go that way, which I enjoy very much.

Then in the last year or so, I started experimenting with something I kept bumping into as a skill people suggested, not for bivocational ministry, but for people who like to work at home or want to get out of the regular grind and that is trading. Trading crypto and trading stocks.

Now, I got into crypto just to kind of figure out and understand the world a little bit in November of 2021. If you know anything about crypto, you know that that was the peak. So I got into crypto at the peak and then of course paid the price, which I like to call tuition for that over the next couple of months when things crashed and burned. But then over the next year or more I started clawing my way back through 2022 in what was still a bear market and got back to the point of profitability.

If I would’ve maybe gotten a job at McDonald’s or something I probably would’ve made more money, but I learned a lot through that. In the process I started getting some training and learning from certain people and ended up then also starting to trade more actively in stocks. That has been much better than crypto, partly because I learned a lot of hard lessons through crypto.

This year right now in my trading, as of the end of May right now, I’m up about bumping 30% up in my trading. I do what’s called swing trading. It’s not day trading, which is too intense and doesn’t really work well if you need to take calls and things. I do swing trading, which is more shorter term. It’s not buy and hold, but it’s shorter term.

I follow a fellow who does swing trading and get tips and training from him, and it’s been very interesting and I’m learning a lot. While my sample size and time is not enough to say, I could really do this and should do this, what I like about it is there is a little bit of intensity and thinking, and then you in a way can forget about it. You set your alerts and when prices get to certain stages, you buy or you sell and you go to the next step.

So I’ve been fairly taken with this and I’m wondering how much I should get into it. Again, it can become a life in its own right, but the nature of swing trading, it allows you to jump in and jump out. If maybe you’re taking some time off, you don’t need to have any active trades going, so it has a lot of flexibility, which for me is in a bivocational ministry role is important. It has the potential obviously to lose money, but also the potential to make money, so I’m experimenting with that and continuing.

I actually am curious if there’s other bi-vocational people who have got gotten into trading and how they’re finding that it works. For me it’s not just about making money. If it’s just about making money, I’d be professional speaking and that’s what I’d be doing. But I need to have some flexibility and freedom, be open to meet with people and talk with people as well as paying the bills. So trading might be something that becomes a bigger part of my bi-vocational journey.

Curious what you think and what you’re learning about this. If you have other ways of making the bi-vocational lifestyle work, I’d love to hear from you.

God bless, press on.

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