With the new year upon us and many of us re-calibrating for the year ahead with various goals and tasks set, I only thought that it would be timely to write about our calling. How do we know what our calling is? How do we know what we’re doing is taking us down the right path, and the direction we’re going in is right?
You may be familiar with Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Which sounds great, but what does it mean for us and how do we apply that?
It was earlier last year when I participated in a small ministry on the weekend which was aimed at recent graduates that had finished their studies and fresh in the workforce. It was great to mingle with a group of people faced with similar situations and emotions. Many of them had that same big questions – where to from here? What I’m meant to do, how do I serve God and how do I know my calling?
Sometimes it takes a while for us to get where we need to, or for particular things to be revealed to us so everything can fall into place. With myself for example, I had previously gone on a small missions trip to India – which now I know it is somewhere I need to be, either long term or certainly regularly at least. Prior to that however, I would have never gone along or even thought about going on a missions trip because it didn’t align with what I wanted or what I foresaw for my life (see James 4:13-17). It took a culmination of circumstances, and humility to bring me to that place, which I’m thankful for.
More recently, in light of the above I felt that as I stepped into the workplace, I was forsaking God by not becoming a full time missionary. It robbed me from enjoyment and excitement of being in a new environment with some great people I could learn from and minister to in other ways. With a few good people around me, they encouraged me not to put pressure on myself, and to enjoy where God had placed me for that time (see Matthew 11:28-30 and 1 Peter 5:7). With their help, I was able to overcome this attitude.
Now while I can’t completely prophetically tell you what your calling is, I hope I can point you in the right direction with a few pointers and from my experiences. Don’t be dismayed, because you’ll get great joy about finding out where you’re purposed for!
I know this is your token answer, but prayer is powerful. God will answer one way or another – but we must be willing to hear and be patient.
(See 1 John 5:14-15 and James 5:13)
2. God’s timing (not ours)
It’s always humbling to put things in perspective. God is the one in total control, and it’s comforting to know that.
(See Acts 1:7 and 2 Peter 3:8)
3. Having a good mentor and friends around you
It sometimes takes someone close to you, and their perspective to see the tree from the forest with respect to what’s happening in your life.
(See 2 Timothy 2:2 and Hebrews 13:7)
4. What the Bible says
Meditating on the Word is always great, particularly when certain parts jump out and speak to you. For me, I’m very much motivated by the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20) as I think every Christian should be, however that may not necessarily mean going out into the nations as a missionary!
5. Continue to act Christly, and glorify Him
We are set apart for a reason, we are called to be the salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16) and to show Godly love to one another (Matthew 22:36-40) and our difference will resonate to those that don’t know God (1 Peter 2:9-12)
You may be called to the marketplace, to be a light among the darkness. Maybe you’re called into the ministry either part time or full time. Either way I do believe we are to serve one way or another, just as Christ who came to serve us (Matthew 20:28).
I pray that this has been able to help you. God bless