This is probably one of the hardest questions people face. I know what I do everyday in my job. I know what hobbies I enjoy. I know how I’m serving in the church but is this my call. We have two calls or types of calls on our lives. First every believer has a general call of God on our lives. One each of us are to fulfill and second, we each have a specific call as the way God created us.
Our first, primary and direct call for all believers
The first call each of those who call themselves Christ-followers has on our lives is simple. I mentioned this last week. Jesus outlined this call when he was questioned. Mark 12: 30,31
And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”
We are all called to love God and love man, we have to discover how to do that through our specific call….more on that in a moment
I believe all of us are called to make disciples Matthew 28:18,19
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
This all sounds nice and we get it at a basic level but specifically how do we understand our call Each Christian has a spiritual gift, and some of us have the same spiritual gifts as each other. 1 Corinthians 12:7
A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.
But none of us are the same person. We all have different personalities. Christian ministry is simply expressing God’s spiritual gifts in individual, personal ways. That is where the specific call kicks in and what we need to understand about our call.
I may have the gift of teaching and you may have it too. My gift may be expressed in teaching adults, teaching in front of the church, mentoring individuals, your gift may be teaching children, small groups, youth, women or men specifically.
There are various gifts of administration one where you love organizing people and things like Lisa does at the coffee shop or there are those who prefer to organize with systems and not be involved with people at all but they are both effective gifts of administration.
The key is discovering your call, your very specific call in the way that enables you to fulfill your general call in a way that brings you joy!
When I first talked with Pastor Don about his call, I asked him, what is it that you love to do. He had pastored a number of churches and there are many different aspects to pastoring. Believe it or not preaching and teaching are a small portion, it is perhaps the most visible but there are many different aspects to pastoring. His answer at that time in his life was, He said I love to counsel people and help them find God’s answers for their life. That is understanding a true calling, his desire satisfied a real need in the world!
This brought him genuine joy because he found his specific and personal call.
Your call will be your passion for you and be a blessing to others.
Here is the challenge
If we do something we enjoy and it only benefits us…it is a hobby
If we use gifts but gain no joy from it, it is a job
When you have truly have found your call, it will combine your passion and benefit others.
That is not to say doing something you enjoy doesn’t bless the Lord, it does if you are using your skills God gave you, it does.
It is also not to say that if you are doing something for a season that doesn’t necessarily give you joy but there is monetary gain and you are fulfilling a need that it doesn’t bless God.
But your true calling will bring you joy and bless others.
Some of us have the privilege of being paid to do their calling others work for a living and the call is something they do apart from monetary gain.
Your call is something that you love to do, it is fulfilling the way God created you
Paul proclaimed….1 Corinthians 9:16
“Yet preaching the Good News is not something I can boast about. I am compelled by God to do it. How terrible for me if I didn’t preach the Good News!”
Paul loved to preach the Gospel, it fulfilled him and used all of his gifts
How do you find your call?
There are three quick ways to discover your call (I’m going to make this quick)
- What is it that you love to do?
- What do other people say about our gifts?
- What is it that you have the skills to do
What do you love to do?
You have been created by God specifically to accomplish a purpose. Your design, your passion, your skills, your personality all have been given to you by God to bring you great joy not just fulfill His purpose. God’s plan is to bring hope and love to a broken world and He has designed to possess hope and love as you discover your purpose and do it
1 Corinthans 2:6-10
6However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, 8which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
9But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
10But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.
God has specifically given you wisdom and understanding of who you are through the joy you experience in the things you do. As you do the things we love, the things we have been designed by God to do….God blesses us in ways we could never imagine…His blessing comes as we discover the things we have been created to love to do…..remember this verse…Ephesians 2:10
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
What do others say about our gifts?
We all part of what is called the Body of Christ and with it each of us serves in a role that causes the whole to function to its best. Unfortunately, what I have seen happen far too often is that people will see the fruit in another person’s ministry and assume they can do the same thing. In the new testament we have a story of the sons of Sceva (Acts 19:13-16) They saw Paul casting our demons and assumed they had the gift and calling to do the same….read the passage on your own it ended in disaster.
God has uniquely gifted you to change the world, you where designed to be you, not Billy Graham, Benny Hinn, David Jeremiah but you….do the first thing discover what truly brings you joy….then ask other around you what do they see as your gifts, the things that fit your personality…Others will recognize your calling an honor it be at peace with it….Paul encouraged his young spiritual son Timothy to do the same thing
1 Timothy 4:14-16
Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecy spoken over you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you. 15 Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress. 16 Keep a close watch on how you live and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right for the sake of your own salvation and the salvation of those who hear you.
What is it you have skills to do?
I shared a few weeks ago this verse from the Psalms 139:13,14
For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
God specifically gave you skills not necessarily skills that others have and even if they are skills that others have add your personality to the mix and they become totally unique.
This weekend in honoring Pastor Don, I wanted to quickly give you some keys to discover your call. He has blessed many of you with his wisdom, properly using his gifts to change the world.
The question and the challenge of this teaching will you use yours….please understand as we grow in the Lord, our call can change, it can shift it can be nuanced in a way. We sometimes have calls for a season then God shifts us, so if you have been following your call and it has become unfruitful it could be it is time to seek the new call.
Please come for prayer