Honoring the Call of God
by Danna Appleby
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Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble. 2 Peter 1:10 (NKJV)
A number of years ago as I was going about my tasks at home, the words, “Do the work of an evangelist,” kept ringing in my spirit. I was troubled because I really didn’t know what they might mean to me personally or why they were coming. I knew that I couldn’t think of myself in a pulpit since I certainly didn’t feel very spiritual.
A Scripture came to mind where the Apostle Paul wrote to a young minister by the name of Timothy telling him to do the work of an evangelist. (2 Tim. 4:5) An evangelist is one who tells the Good News about Jesus Christ and wins souls for the Kingdom of God. But God was patient in waiting for me to answer His call.
For years as I felt inspired by the Holy Spirit, I have sent letters of encouragement to people in need. After the letter was finished, I always felt that I had obeyed God and knew that someone was about to receive some good words of love and support. Other times, I felt the need to send cards to those who were sick or needy in some other way.
Sometimes I spoke at a ladies’ Bible study at my work or gave my testimony at a church, but still I didn’t feel like I was doing the work of what I thought an evangelist might do. I believe now that God saw otherwise.
Then in the early part of January, 2005, I began the year by fasting and asking God what He wanted me to do in the upcoming year as far as my ministry was concerned. I remember being tearful as I prayed not knowing which direction to take. I told the Lord that He had done so much for me that doing more for Him was the least I could.
As I sat on my couch that day, praying and committing my life once again to the Lord, all of a sudden it was though the answer dropped right down into the pit of my stomach. The message came so clear: “Write a devotional and the name of it will be Time Out for God.” It was as if a light bulb went on somewhere within me and I felt a big smile come across my face and I answered excitedly, “I don’t know how to write a devotional or what steps to take but I’ll do it!” Somehow I knew the messages would be sent through e-mail and as I looked at a blank computer screen, began to have an intense excitement for what God had in store for me. So with the Lord’s leading, I wrote what He placed upon my heart and sent out my first devotional on February 1, 2005. From that time until now, I have been enabled by the Spirit of the Lord to do what He called me to do.
It was an honor to accept the call and it has felt natural to me. This is what I feel is my evangelistic calling. I may not stand in a pulpit, but I proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in an evangelistic way through these writings. It is my greatest desire to know that people are being saved, restored or helped in any way at all.
Many times my devotionals come through inspiration of songs. Other times, they may come from inspiration of Scripture or a topic the Lord places on my heart.
It has been a wonderful journey with the Lord and I give Him praise for allowing me the opportunity to be of service to Him. I believe I am absolutely within His will. That in itself is a wonderful realization.
From what I know about our calling, the Lord gives us precisely what fits our personality and character. Let me ask you a question: do you think the Lord would give you a beautiful outfit to wear but it not fit properly? It would be miserable to wear something with sleeves hanging so long making you clumsy or the hem of the jacket dragging the ground making it difficult to walk. No, the Lord would give you an outfit tailored to fit you in every detail because He knows exactly what size you are.
The same thing goes for a calling or spiritual gift. They are fitted just for us. Our Father equips us with all of the essential ingredients for doing everything just the way we alone can do. He would never ask you to go across the seas to be a missionary if you were not totally suited for it. He would never call you to do anything out of character for you.
So what is your calling? You may have been wondering that same thing for years and wanted to know how you could better serve the Lord. Whatever your talents, abilities and desires you have will give a hint as to what your calling is.
If you love to work with children, then you will be well-fitted in the children’s department at your church or at a school. If you love to help the sick and elderly, you might be well-suited visiting the elderly, working at a nursing home or being a hospital worker or volunteer. If a beautiful sound comes out of your mouth when you open it to sing, you may feel led to sing in your church. But on the other hand, being mindful if everyone around you looks at you in amazement when you attempt to sing that might not be your calling. But I encourage you not to despair because you have giftings and callings that those who can sing might long for.
Earlier in this article I mentioned writing letters of encouragement. Not even realizing it, I was being groomed to write these devotionals. The devotionals are similar to letters of encouragement, but now they’re sent to a large group of people instead of just one at a time.
Now, I encourage you to go and be a blessing to someone somewhere. I hope that something I have said spurs you on to become busy about your Father’s business. He needs all of us because time is short before His Son’s return.
If you don’t know what your calling is, ask God and He will be faithful to answer.
Prayer: Father, thank you for the calling you placed upon my life. Thank you for the opportunity to speak to these wonderful people who allow “our” articles to come across their computer screens or printed and given to others. I pray for each one reading this message to heed your call in whatever manner you have called them. Show them the way to do it just as you faithfully showed me and as you have been so faithful to do down through the ages for many others. I love you Lord and love to share the Gospel with all who love to take “Time Out for God.” In Jesus’ name. Amen.
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Tim. 3:16-17 (NKJV)
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Very good article and so true. Too many go without being sent. I have learned that God enhances our personalities, rather than changing them. True, each of us is suited for the particular purpose God has for us. Thank you for sharing this truth...wanting more of God and his direction and purpose...then we will be happy in what we are doing.