Am I called?
Am I qualified?
Are these questions you have heard in your Churchy context?
I think these questions show how we have a very bizarre idea about the whole idea of vocation (living out Gods call on our life) which I think displays itself in what we think of as normal and ordinary.
Let me digress for a moment, most people wouldn’t think of sticking the firms monthly takings in their purse, why, because we know it is wrong and not how Christians should behave. we don’t need to have a prayer meeting and seek wise and Godly counsel to know that being honourable and honest is a right way to behave. So, if we know as a follower of Jesus that there is some behaviours we ought to avoid, why do we count ourselves out from the positive behaviours of things we should be doing?
Every Christian is called to worship, not just singing songs but “being a living sacrifice” -living our lives Christ’s way, the idea of a living sacrifice is it chooses to remain on the altar, so we choose to live our lives as “A Spiritual Act of worship”.
Every Christian is called to be “salt and light” where-ever they are and whatever they do.
Every Christian is called to “Do Justice, Love Mercy and walk humbly”…
The Good Samaritan is a picture for us all, we shouldn’t need to have a soul searching Bible study when we see someone struggling and needing some compassion.
Matthew 25 is clearly speaking to all Christians everywhere, of how normal life should be, “what you did for the least of these you did for me”.
If you see someone hungry, I would suggest that you don’t need to ring up your pastor before you buy them a coffee and a pastie.
If you see someone crying you probably don’t need to make an appointment with your home group leader before you pull up a chair and ask what’s wrong?
If your Church has a donation box for tins, or does a soup run, or some other work of compassion and you are able to do it why do you feel like we need a specific theophany? -The problem is we count ourselves out and think it is someone elses’ job, when the truth is we are all called to care and to show love in practical way.
I know not everything Church does we can always make due to work or commitments, but it is interesting that too often we rule ourselves out, rather than counting ourselves in. I would suggest that if it is within our power to help someone then of course we do it!
I think too we often have a either arrogance or insecurities around works of compassion and we need to ask ourselves “why wouldn’t God want me to do this?” If it being obedient to the commands of scripture and the words of Christ, then why do we often want some form of dramatic encouragement to do the right thing?
Every Christian is called to pray, and seek the advancement and break-out of the Kingdom of God, I am amazed (without wanting to sound pious) when I ask people (Christians) if they have prayed about something and they say they haven’t. Praying is something we all ought to be doing, in praying we are “seeking first the Kingdom of God” and seeking to see “(God’s) Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven”. I wonder if some of our greatest prayer (are in hospital beds, or nursing homes? whatever our life is like, we can all pray. Since the curtain has been torn in two after Jesus’ death, we can approach the throne of God directly and with boldness. The truth is the prayers of a Nun, Vicar or the person serving the tea are of equal value to God, because we are all his beloved Children.
Sometimes we are called to pray with one another and ask someone to pray with us and stand alongside us, but that is what we all should be doing anyway, it is what being art of the body of Christ, the family of God is all about.
You don’t need to have done three years in Bible college to care about your friends and pray with them and alongside them. Caring and praying is something we are all meant to do anyway, building up the body (by which I mean those Christians around us).
Every Christian is called “to be a witness” to share their story, or testimony, to “always be prepared to give an account for the hope that we have, but do so with gentleness and respect”, to “hold out the word that gives life” -we are all called to “do the work of an evangelist”, talking about the Kingdom and being “Christ’s Ambassador” is something we are all meant to be doing as our normal every-life.
So, sharing our faith on a mission, might be a bit scary, but the truth is “if you have a pulse and love Jesus” then you are more than qualified, it’s what “the priest-hood of all believers” is about Christ enabling people to meet with him through us. If you are able to come along and talk to people about Jesus then it is not a case of “is God calling me? -The Answer is clearly YES from the scriptures” -we are all called to make Jesus known, okay we might not be able to do everything that happens in our Churches, but I think more often than not we let the devil talk us out of being obedient.
The phrase “I don’t feel called to that” I think is often nothing to do with Gods call but rather who has Lordship over our lives, I think deep down we know when an excuse is an excuse and when is a genuine conviction that God is calling us else where.
So, the challenge is to live out our faith, in word and deed, in how we act and behave, where we know we are called, qualified and commissioned serving God in all he called us to do right in front of us, right here right now, you don’t need a thunderbolt to be obedient.
Just do it.
It’s what normal everyday Christianity should look like.