The Hope of Calling
Can you imagine a symphony orchestra without a conductor? A team without a coach? A book without an author? Or, God forbid, a wedding without a groom?
When someone pursues calling and purpose in life without acknowledging a “Caller”, the attempt is futile. One popular author who does not mention God tries to infuse life’s work with meaning by referring to “the summons of that which needs doing”. That has about as much appeal as fizzless Coke, and can lead to extremes of becoming either a dogmatic addict or a disillusioned drop-out.
In his book The Call, Os Guinness offers a well-spring of life in his definition: “Calling is the truth that God calls us to himself so decisively that everything we are, everything we do, and everything we have is invested with a special devotion, dynamism, and direction lived out as a response to his summons and service.”
First, He calls us to Himself.
Then, He calls us to use the abilities He has given us to serve others.
Guinness relates the story of Alexander Solzhenitsyn, who was an aimless writer before his horrible experience in the Russian Gulag. Later, he was miraculously cured of cancer and met a Jewish believer who led him to faith in Jesus Christ. He had an increasing sense of calling to put “the dying wish of millions” on record. His did just that in many volumes, including The Gulag Archipelago, which had a profound impact on my life.
Many people can remember a moment during childhood when they felt joyfully awakened to what they love to do, whether in the area of music, sports, art, medicine, science, teaching or whatever. Do you remember such a time? Often it is forgotten when the stresses of life threaten to overwhelm us.
The same is true of God. There are times when He seeks us out and wants to reveal Himself to us, drawing us to know Him and embark on the journey that He has planned for our lives. Conducting the most breathtaking symphony we have ever heard. Coaching us to not give up during a difficult season, while assuring us that victory is ahead. Writing our story for others to read and come in contact with the love He seeks to reveal through our lives. And walking with us in a loving relationship that lasts into eternity. Are you listening?
Hear the call.