When I was first put on trial, no one helped me. In fact, everyone deserted me. I hope it won’t be held against them. But the Lord stood beside me. He gave me the strength to tell his full message, so that all Gentiles would hear it. And I was kept safe from hungry lions. The Lord will always keep me from being harmed by evil, and he will bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. Praise him forever and ever! Amen.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 2 Timothy 4:16-18 (CEV)
Everyone of us has a â€˜callâ€™. It is God’s plan for my life and if I am willing, He wants to use me to build His kingdom. For most of us, God is not calling us to be a part of the â€˜officesâ€™ in the Church. (apostles, prophets, evangelists, teachers, pastors, see Ephesians 4) A wonderful woman that I know is called to be an â€˜encouragerâ€™. She speaks wonderful words and gives great hugs. She is instrumental in building the Kingdom because she is fulfilling a vital role and is obedient to that â€˜callâ€™ from her Lord. My â€˜accountability sisterâ€™ has many gifts and has a â€˜callâ€™ for several roles but her willingness to be obedient to Godâ€™s request to speak His wisdom and truth to me is a precious gift that I do not take for granted.
No matter what is our â€˜callâ€™, I suspect that Paulâ€™s words to Timothy strike a personal chord in each of our lives. There are times that I feel very much alone. Each of us have a choice when God taps us on the shoulder and tells us to â€˜goâ€™ or â€˜speakâ€™ or â€˜prayâ€™ and my obedience to that order or my distraction away from the order or even my refusal has a ripple-effect. I know there have been times that I felt alone and later someone said, â€œI thought about calling you and then got busy.â€ Paul is so correct when he said, â€œBut the Lord stood at my side and gave me strengthâ€. God never lets us down. In those times of alone-ness, God is there. It is in those times when I hear His â€˜callâ€™ and take another step of faith, with or without anyoneâ€™s apparent support, and find God there with all that I need.
I can do everything through him who gives me strengthâ€¦
And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Philippians 4:13, 19 (NIV)
Between these two verses, Paul lists many people who helped him in various ways. But I noticed that he began and ended the list with His Lord.
More and more in my life, I find myself desiring to be obedient to Godâ€™s will and plan for me. I pray for ears to hear and a heart to receive whatever He asks me to do. Some of those â€˜callsâ€™ I am humbled that He would ask me. Some seem overwhelming. Some seem of little consequence in the big picture scheme of things. It is not for me to figure it out, is it? I cannot possibly grasp what the â€˜big pictureâ€™ is anyway! Obedience to an opportunity for God to be glorified is all that matters. And with every â€˜callâ€™ whether I see it as great or small, God gives me all that I need to finish the job.