Calling is confusing. I would say that I have had a strong call on my life, but calling has still left me crying on the floor begging God for answers. There are days where I love calling and other days where we are not on a talking basis.
As I write these words I realize that I am not the most qualified to talk on the topic of calling. You could probably go find a really confident, probably handsome, toned, Masters in Divinity, only eats Chick-Fil-A type of guy and read his blog post about calling. I am simply a journeyman with you trying to make sense of the mess we have made with calling. Therefore, God’s word must be the lamp that illuminates the truth of what calling is meant to be in our lives.
Let’s do just that.
Every single person is called into a relationship with Christ. Jesus came to seek and to save the lost. John 3:16 sums it up, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (esv). He calls everyone into a personal, saving relationship with him.
This is foundational. As Christians, if we do not get this part right then nothing else in our Christian walk will make sense because we will only be living for ourselves.
When you accept Jesus then you accept that you have been bought with a price and therefore, you are not your own (Rom. 14:8; Phil. 1:21). We cannot choose the life of Jesus without surrendering to the lifestyle of Jesus. Calling grows in the soil of surrender.
“When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.”Dietrich Bonhoeffer
If you miss Christ then you have missed your calling.
I truly believe that the devil wants to overcomplicate your calling. He wants to convince you that your calling is like a hidden treasure that can only be found when you step perfectly through life. He wants to convince you that calling is a someday, but not today. He wants to convince you that calling is an achievement to reach for instead of a reality to live in.
I believe that calling is for you right now. I believe it is a greater purpose than you could ever imagine. I believe that when Christians step into their calling then lives change, cities are saved, and communities heal. So what is it?
Glorify God’s name.
It can’t be that simple, can it? What if I am called to be a baseball coach, teacher, dog trainer, barista, engineer, or bus driver? Great! Glorify God.
Yet, even the words “glorify God” have a vagueness about them that can slip through our fingers.
“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”1 Corinthians 10:31
What Paul is saying in 1 Corinthians is that glorifying God is not a Sunday morning or Wednesday night deal. Every day is an opportunity to live in your calling to glorify God. What does this look like? It looks like simply having your priorities straight.
The tension is that our hearts have been conditioned to glorify ourselves. We are all calling-amnesiacs. In the everyday pursuit of making our lives as productive, comfortable, and enjoyable as possible we forget the one who calls us. We have a calling because we have been called. What makes calling confusing is that we are constantly forgetting the one who calls us.
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”1 Peter 2:9
We follow a sovereign God. He is in control. If he needs you somewhere then he will get you there. When you are walking with Christ then he will direct your steps. Calling grows in the soil of surrender.
God is less worried about where you go and more worried with who you glorify.
“Calling is a process rather than a destination, since life is ever-changing as we likewise change.”Ivan Mesa