Monday, May 19, 2008

Static on the line

"We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully." Romans 12:6-8

Paul writes this letter shortly after telling the members of the church in Rome to "...offer [their] bodies as living sacrifices, holy an pleasing to God." This is one of the most vivid descriptions of how we are to live our lives as Christians. A sacrifice is something we offer to God in thanks for the blessings we've been given. If we offer our bodies as living sacrifices, it means we are working for the Lord. This doesn't mean that all should work in the church, or with church organizations, but it does mean that as Christians we're trying to take the gospel with us everywhere...yes, everywhere. Paul, tells us that we all have different gifts, and that those gifts were intentionally given to us- for the purpose of spreading the word about God's love. This is not a new concept for many people... but what about when the world tries to confuse your calling?

How do we react when something in this life causes us to wonder if our gifts are good enough? How do we react when we feel inadequate? Each of us has been called for a specific purpose in life, whether we've discerned it or not. But, how do we feel when we question our calling? What do we do when we feel we've lost the battle?

There are things in this world that will try to bring you down. That's just the way it is. Sometimes it will be an event. Maybe someone or something...maybe a stranger, or a friend. But know that it will come. And when it does, no amount of preparation can make it easy to deal with. It doesn't take much to make us doubt our calling and our faith (see Peter's attempt to walk on water ), but the good news is knowing that none of that comes from God. God would never cause us to doubt our calling- that's something the world does. And the self-doubt is a product of our own insecurities. And we don't have to win anything- we're nothing without God, recognizing your dependence on God can free you from feeling that you always have to be good enough.

So, when the time comes (or maybe the next time comes) when you feel discouraged from your call, or this world tells you you're not enough: Listen for God, and trust in the call that is yours.

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