Where do I find it? (Nehemiah 1 follow up)

January 17, 2011 by cloften  
Filed under Bible, Church and Leadership, Teaching

I will try (keyword: try) to post something every Monday after each week of the Nehemiah series.  Most of these topics that we will talk about on Sunday morning could be its own series.  There is so much that could be said, but no one wants to hang out there until 4.  So, I’ll drop a thought or two here.

We talked a lot about the passion and calling that Nehemiah had.  I believe that God has given each one of us a call.  This call comes from our strengths, skills, gifts and passions.  Some people wonder how they can find their calling.  How do you know?  Is it some supernatural moment?  Does it come from some internal tingling?  Will God send you a Twitter message?  “I’m serving and I enjoy it, but I don’t know if it rises to the level of ‘calling.’”

Here are some thoughts:

1) Don’t wait for some mystical confirmation or finding the ideal place to serve to start serving.  Maybe your passion is going to be children’s ministry, maybe it’s not.  You won’t find out by not serving or taking some gifting/passion inventory.  You will find out by serving in the children’s ministry.  Serve somewhere.  Serve in your church.  Respond to some ministry’s need in the community.  Go work with Habitat for a day.  Go feed the homeless.  Do something.  You aren’t going to think your way to your best fit.  You will serve your way there.

2) There is no such thing as a big call and a small call.  All calls come from God.  By definition, they are all big.  Better that someone respond to God’s call to a simple behind the scene’s ministry than feel like they have to do something.  Some people’s passion and calling is in the nursery with small babies.  These are tremendous servants who not only love precious babies but allow parents to worship freely and know that their baby is being loved on and cared for.  If god is the one leading and directing, that is not a downgrade from missionary in 3rd world country.

3) Serving is meant to be enjoyable.  Often we associate serving in the church with a workout.  “You know you did it right if you didn’t enjoy it and it hurts afterward.”  God has designed you to use your gifts.  When you do, God will bless you and you will be very glad that you did.”

4) Pressure + Guilt = Calling.  While that is the typical formula.  I disagree.  Passion + Gifts + Opportunity = Calling

Get out there.  Find a place where God can use you.  Pray.  Ask God to show you your passions and gifts.  Ask friends.

Expect God to do amazing things.


One Response to “Where do I find it? (Nehemiah 1 follow up)”
  1. Peter Freund says:

    Good post. Spiritual gifts play a central role in God’s calling on each of us. We, as Christians, will already be gifted to play our part.

    I agree that serving is enjoyable if we are doing what we are called to do. Some people aren’t well suited for some ministries (as you said in the sermon about homeless people and you not being as passionate about it as others). Strangely though, some of the greatest service to God is not enjoyable . I don’t think Jesus enjoyed his service to humanity on the cross. It was unbearable suffering. But, maybe in a deeper sense Jesus was able to “enjoy” what he was doing in the sense since it is true that he delighted in sacrificing himself for us. How else could he pray that God would forgive those who were torturing him while he was being tortured (”Forgive them for they know not…”). On the other hand, Jesus tried pleaded with God in the garden in case there might be some other way to accomplish God’s will. Maybe a better word is “fulfilling”.

    Just some thoughts not meant to contradict your overall point, but to maybe dig a little deeper when thinking about enjoyment since my passion is digging deep. Christians sometimes don’t want to do things unless they are enjoyable or fun. I remember someone in a Bible study once saying “Bible study is supposed to be fun”. But, it isn’t always fun. Sometimes studying the Bible is frustrating but worth it anyway. :)

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