I grew up in a typical charismatic evangelical church. By typical, I mean it wasn’t uncommon to see people laying on the floor weeping, or to hear shouting from all over the room in heavenly languages, or to attend secular CD bonfires. It was never dull, that was for sure.
Growing up in the charismatic church allowed me to see the world in a different perspective and I wouldn’t change that for anything. However, one thing I would change was their teaching on calling.
Whenever the message would be about “God’s calling” in life, it always reverted to some ministry position. It was almost as if you wanted to become a doctor, lawyer, or pilot God would think it was an OK thing but if you were to go into a ministry position, God would be ecstatic and forgive you for wanting to pursue those worlds occupations.
The teaching on calling and your profession were always intertwined. It wasn’t until later in life that I understood that they are two separate entities.
A job is for a season. Your calling is for a lifetime.
A job is on your resume. Your calling is imprinted on your soul.
In an ideal world, our job and calling would somehow be connected, but we don’t live in a perfect world. Most of us will have moments scattered throughout our lives that make us come alive. This is when our soul is the fullest.
Your calling should create an inner restlessness when you’re outside of it. Your calling should create an inner peace when you are living inside it.
Finding your calling isn’t an objective, it’s a journey.
What Does Scripture Say About Calling?
Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing. Ephesians 2:7-10
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. – Psalm 37:4
He fulfills the desire of all who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them- Psalm 145:19
“Be who God meant you to be and you will see the world on fire”—Catherine of Siena
There is this misconception among Christians that if God has called you to something, you’re going to hate it. I use to think God was going to call me to a country I hated and make me live there. Why would God do that? I realize now that my thinking was skewed and uneducated.
Would God want me to be a disgruntled ambassador for him? That undermines His authority. Going back to the missionary analogy, the best missionaries in the world have a desire to be where they are at. If you feel this pull to a particular type of work, it’s most likely God tugging at your heartstrings telling you that’s where he wants you. Frederick Buechner writes, “The place God calls you is where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
You probably already have these ideas in your head on what God has called you to do for your life, but sometimes it can get muddled in our brain. Here are 4 tips on how to discover your calling.
1. You feel God while doing it
Do you feel most at peace?
2. Other’s affirm your gifts
3. It’s the thing that drives you
4. It makes an impact on the world
Today, may you live fully in God’s calling. May you live with intention and pay attention to the things that matter most to you and God.