"Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it." (Matthew 10:34-39
Are you familiar with Paul Saul often mistakenly referred to as "Saul before he converted to Paul"? Here is a man who suffered greatly (Greek words: imprisonment)—yet he is anything but defeated or depressed. His life is full of purpose and destiny—so he speaks of the great privilege of suffering for that purpose, and of God’s power which strengthens and energizes him to labor for that purpose.
What is this purpose that fills and drives Paul? He has been called by God to play a unique and significant role in his plan. We’ll take a closer look at Paul’s calling in a minute, but first I want to focus on the main point—Paul was filled with joy and a sense of privilege and motivation and power because he was gripped by God’s calling for his life.
Do you know if you have been called to do God's will? How rare this is in our culture! So rare that most people cannot conceive of suffering for a cause greater than their own comfort, let alone feeling privileged to do so. But with this life without calling comes emptiness, boredom, and cynicism. Yet because we are made in God’s image, we cannot help but resonate with the idea of living to fulfill a cause/calling greater than ourselves.
The first and foundational step in knowing God’s calling for your life is to receive God’s “mystery”. A biblical “mystery” is simply a part of God’s redemptive plan for humanity that hasn’t been revealed until now.
The Old Testament prophets knew that God’s plan centered around the Messiah (“Christ”)—that Messiah would come at the end of the age to re-establish God’s kingdom over the whole, and that he would pour out God’s Spirit on all of his people (Jews and Gentiles) so that they would all experience God’s glorious presence in amazing ways (Isa.11:9,10).
But they did not know that prior to the end of the age, the Messiah would come as a Suffering Servant to die for humanity’s sins—and that he would actually live inside all who put their trust in him (regardless of ethnic origin). When Jesus lives inside you, he enables you to personally experience God’s love and presence in your life—a taste of God’s future glorious kingdom now. When Jesus lives in you, he begins to reveal your unique part in God’s plan.
When I look back on my own life, I can see this much more clearly now than I did at the time. People open their hearts to Jesus for many different reasons (forgiveness, loneliness, career, etc...) I opened my heart to Jesus for purpose and direction. I realized that my own direction of my life was a failure. Though I would not have used this term at the time, I felt "lost." In the moment that I admitted this to myself, this wonderful invitation came into my mind (Revelation 3:20). I sensed that the time had come to do this, so I said: “Jesus, if you are real, come into my heart and lead my life.” That decision to ask Jesus to live inside me—to receive God’s “mystery”—was almost ten years ago—and I am awed by the significance of that decision. It was the “Y” in the road between stumbling in the dark and (gradually) discovering God’s calling for my life. Granted, these past years have been confusing and I've made mistakes along the way. But especially over the past year, I've come to understand why my path had taken the route it had. It was all being done to strengthen me, give me greater exposure to the diverse sometimes harsh world and to develop the character, humility and wisdom that is needed to be a leader. My purpose is and will be to expose the corruption and evil that exists in the world. This evil isn't of people alone, but from the lordship of Satan over the hearts, minds and souls of people. Central organizations that answer to Satan are the Bilderbergers, the Council on Foreign Relations, and Trilateral Commission to name a few.
This same decision can have the same result for you. There are many other keys to knowing God’s calling for your life, but it always begins with this key—responding to Jesus’ offer to live in you. He is the Lord, he made you for himself and for his plans. You are fundamentally out of synch with the purpose of your life until he lives within you. How will you respond to his invitation?
If you know who you are and you know God's will for your life, then you will eventually come to know your calling too.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Posted by Chris F. at 8:01 PM