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Every Christian in all walks of life in some time or another will be asked by the Lord to do something for His kingdom. It could be as dramatic as Paul’s calling when the Lord struck Him blind on his way to Damascus. It could be as astonishing as Moses’ when God met Him in the form of burning bush. It could be in an audible voice like in the case of Samuel the prophet.
We may or may not be called to do big tasks for our Lord. However, until we take heed and answer to our particular calling, we miss out the privilege of seeing His powerful hand working through us. Can you imagine the awe that Moses felt when he saw how God divided the red sea? Daniel must have praised God in holy jubilation as God’s angel shut the mouth of the lion. Consider the gladness in Peter’s heart as he saw thousands of people transformed and became followers of Christ after his preaching in the morning of Pentecost. The mission field is the avenue where God’s power is demonstrated, God’s faithfulness is displayed and God’s work is completed.
“Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy in proportion to our faith; if service in our serving; he who teaches in his teaching; he who exhorts in his exhortation; he who contributes in liberality; he who gives aid with zeal; he who does act of mercy with cheerfulness.” (Romans 12:6-8). We have a role to perform as a member of the mystical body of Christ. Ultimately, the very reason why God called us into His fold is to experience the greatness of His love and to become a witness of His love to others. When we have tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord, we want to pass it on.
“Yes, I love the Lord. I want to serve Him but ….” I remember how scared I was before by just thinking of God sending me out to labor in His field. I believe many sincere Christians who seriously desire to grow in the Lord also struggle in this area. The heart of worship is surrender. The measure of our trust in the Lord is reflected on how far are we willing to be used as God’s instrument … despite of the inner screams of self-doubt … despite of how limited our capacity are… despite of our fears.
The most common reason why Christians do not hear God’s call or maybe do not want to hear God’s call is fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of lack of skills, fear of persecution, fear of other people’s opinion, and fear in whatever form. Oftentimes God calls us to perform works beyond our present capability that the only way to accomplish them is to rely on His help. “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness…” (2 Cor. 12:9). The Lord promised His timely help. “Do not be anxious how or what you are to answer or say; for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.” (Luke 12:11-12). The Lord is not looking for talented and gifted people. The Bible narrates how God uses ordinary people with extraordinary love and faith. What stands out among this crowd is their great love for God and their willingness to be used by Him without reserve or question.
In other instances, we tend to struggle in the opposite side of the coin. Our tendency to rely on our personal capacity goes back to our first parents who wanted to be like gods themselves. The sin of pride is disgusting before the Lord. It might be as subtle as doing things without praying for God’s guidance. “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” (Psalms 127:1). Good things done with wrong motive and wrong disposition are not good at all. The fact remains that a mere human being can’t do anything without the help and the blessing of his maker. He simply needs the Lord, period. It is only right and proper to give back all the glory to the One who really deserves them. Ministries are supposedly done with God’s help and done for the love of God.
The pitfalls of being used as God’s instrument might be many and the road is not easy. Yet we believe in the power of prayer and in the power of the grace of God. Everything begins with a sincere desire and a prayer. “Lord, hear I am. Use me if you can and when you can. With the help of your grace, I want to be your instrument in whatever way that would please you. For the love of you, I will go.”
Count it joy when God calls you and sends you out for something noble. Just for reality check, God can do things without us. He can use a donkey to prophesy as in the story of Balaam. But the Lord’s plan is to work through us so that we can share in the happiness of witnessing daily miracles, of bringing hope to the hopeless, of setting free the captives, and of touching the hearts of others.
May we serve the Lord with love and with joy. God Bless us all abundantly always.