Daily Devotionals

God is calling

Can we have a visit about what those of us in the Church world refer to as “calling”? A calling is an invitation from God to join Him in His work. Sometimes it’s dramatic, but I tend to think that has more to do with our personalities than it does with His intentions. Most of the time, God makes us aware of His plans for us in subtle, quiet, but very intentional ways. A quiet voice. A simple conversation. A very direct passage in the Word. Subtle cues from the Holy Spirit as we pray, meditate on Scripture or are walking in obedience. These are all normal for the Christ-follower.

I remember when God first began directing my heart. I was 11 and heard the Lord very clearly say, “I want you to be a missionary. I want you to take the Gospel to those who’ve never heard before.” I told the Church (which just happens to be the great Church I still attend!) that news and they began in that moment to pray for me. When I was 17, God spoke to me again about my future. He said, “I want you to preach the Word. I want you to take care of my people.” I wrestled with this word for one full year. I didn’t understand what seemed to me to be a change in calling; a change in the direction God wanted me to move/live. As I prayed and sought the Lord, He eventually showed me through Isaiah 49 that my calling wasn’t changing. He was sharpening my focus. I now know God has shaped me to shepherd the Church to reach those who’ve never known God before. I’m a pastor with a missionary heart!

Knowing what God has shaped us to do gives us a huge sense of confidence. It shouldn’t make us prideful, because we know we could never do these God-sized tasks on our own. Just like the guy who has a degree in accounting or welding, when you step into his workspace, he can show you around. He’s in his element. He knows what to do in that place. So it is for the called. We are comfortable in our shoes and excited to be on the job with the Lord.

Who can be called? Listen to me carefully here: every single believer in Christ. Calling is not limited to pastors or Christians who get paid to serve the Church. God has shaped each one of us to do life with Him … and that’s exciting!

What has God called you to do? I’m not asking if He’s called you to preach or work in the nursery. Serving the Church is awesome, but calling reaches far beyond the walls of the Church. Do you realize the great demand for Jesus-loving veterinarians and God-centered farmers? Does it make sense to you that God’s desire is to equip every single person working in the line at Tyson to follow Him with every fiber of their being? When you think about what a business would look like if every single employee was giving their lives to God on a daily basis, what do you see? I tremble at the possibilities!

When I talk about calling, I don’t mean at some point in your life you signed a membership card in a Church. I don’t mean you’ve been baptized or even that you can quote the 23rd Psalm, among other passages. I mean you love the Lord with all your heart, mind, soul and strength and want to learn how to love your neighbor as yourself. I mean you recognize the sin that’s been present in your heart since birth and willingly ask Jesus to forgive you, restore you and give you the ability to serve Him. Calling isn’t something we define or direct. It is always pointed at God. It’s always connected to His heart.

I want to encourage you to step into God’s calling for your life today. If you don’t have the foggiest idea what that might be, don’t look at me! Look at Him! Seek Him in His Word and prayer; wait for Him there. He’s not going to hide from you. He knows you and loves you and wants to see you in a relationship with the world around you that is filled with and defined by His joy. He wants to see you on sure footing, gaining strength every day in Him. He wants you to be confident as you tell others about the things He’s doing in your life.

Would you be willing to take a step like that? I can promise you it is exciting! I won’t promise you it’s easy, because it isn’t. But I can guarantee you that, just like everything else you’ve worked for, you will be thankful you entered into God’s calling for your life. I can also tell you that you aren’t alone. Churches are filled with people who want to be useful and full of purpose and just don’t know how. God can make you a bright example of the way He can use anyone for His glory.

Seek Him today. Don’t wait another minute. I wake up most days excited about the tasks God is placing in front of me. The joy of walking with Jesus is always greater than the anxiety of walking alone. Come join the party!

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