Monday, September 14, 2009

A Calling

So the saying is that God's voice is that still small voice whispering into your ear, right? We have all heard that said. For the most part I agree with that statement. I have had times when I had to be absolutely still and I did hear God's voice whispering something to me. Then, I immediately obey and do as instructed and am blessed beyond imagination.

For the most part, however, when the still small voice is making its debut I either do not hear it or cannot decipher what it is saying. This is mostly true when I am getting a calling from God. The irony is that if it is rebellion in my heart, or sin, I hear the voice loud and clear and I know what it is God is saying. That is when I have to decide if I will choose obedience or if I will choose rebellion. When you look on the outside, the answer is obvious, OK so maybe for you it is in your life too, but I am a huge sinner! I sometimes struggle- OK usually struggle with making the right choices, this is especially true if it is not something that I want to change and it usually is.

But I am not talking about sin right now. I am talking about a calling. I am talking about the way God talks to me when He is calling me to do something. This could just be that I alone am thick headed and partly deaf to God. It might just be that I alone second guess if the voice I hear is God's or my own. I don't think that this is 100% true, though. I have a feeling that others out there have the same struggle when God calls them. I think that it is so easy to decide that we don't know what God wants and to ignore Him if we do know what he wants. Even Abraham and Sarah were not sure exactly what God was doing. They thought they would take it into their own hands to fulfil God's promise when Sarah gave Abraham her servant to have children with. They struggled to know what God's plan was going to look like. I am not wholly sure that they were not trusting that God would fulfill his intended promise. I think a part of them thought they were doing what God wanted by having a son. There was definitely a part of them that didn't trust God to do things, but I think they were still figuring out what the plan would look like.

When God calls me to do something, it starts out small and quiet. It is almost as if he is saying to me, "Danica, get ready. Soon something is going to happen." When this happens it is more of a whisper in my ear. Often I confuse the whisper with my own ideas and ambitions and ignore it. I do that a lot and I often wonder what more God would have in store for me if I would immediately cry out "Here I am" as Abraham did. But unfortunately I am more of a Samuel, mistaking the voice of God as someone else's.

The next thing that happens to me, when God is calling me, is a tap on the shoulder. I start to feel more strongly that God is moving me in a direction, and I start to look for where the tap is coming from. At this point, where I find I am apparently blind and completely in my own fog, I still don't quite see where the tap is taking me. I again, ignore it. This time, though I am more keenly aware that something could be happening at some point.

The next thing that happens is more like a strong tug. After weeks, months, even years, God is starting to be more clear to me. There starts to be a tug at my arm as if to say "Look, silly!!!! I want you to look over here!!! This is going to happen and it is going to happen soon" At this point I usually catch on that God is the one saying these things and it is not just in my own head. I am usually alert to watch for direction and guidance as well as open doors. After this point I can typically see the road that God is laying out for me to some extent.

The funny thing about a calling, is that it typically comes into focus when there is more than one opportunity presented. I , personally, think that it is God's way of making us listen really closely to Him and follow Him. It is usually the way that we didn't expect that we are supposed to follow and go towards. It is at this point that we are supposed to stand firm and wait prayerfully for God's direction. I think this was the point where Abraham and Sarah got impatient and decided that they would decide what God's plan for them would look like. They grabbed the reigns and directed their paths. That was a mistake that has effected millions of lives. If they would have waited for God's direction they would have seen God's plan.

That is the hard part. When we are called to something, especially if we are eager to serve God and see our lives used for His purpose, it is difficult not to allow our own purpose to squeeze in. That sounds ironic, nonsensical even, but true for so many. It is when we want to please God that our own selfish hearts jump in and say, "Hey, you are waiting and wanting this so much that it must be OK!! God must want you to do it your way because He isn't giving a clear direction. You should go that way and God will bless you because it is for Him." That is where we fool ourselves. That is not for Him. That is for our own selfish ambition. If it is truly for God, it has to be His perfect plan. We are merely the vessels to see it through. It is only if we sit down on the raft and allow ourselves to be carried by the river God uses to make our path that we can be doing His will. When we get off the raft and make our own path, we will be swept away and end up flailing and drowning in the water. Then God has to put us back on His raft and start again. It only makes things messier and takes the process longer. So hold on to your raft and wait on God!

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