Brook wrote something down from her devotions that I thought I would share. It is so exciting to see how God is challenging her. He is challenging me through what I read. Hope it inspires and encourages you.
“At the beginning of Paul’s letters, he introduces himself and lets the reader in on his intentions for the letter. Most of the time I skip his into and get right into his letter. If I do happen to read it, I just skim it knowing that the meat is coming up.
Today, I chose to ask God to reveal Himself through His scripture. If I remember, I ask God to do this every time I start to read His word. Today, the words seemed to jump off of the page at me.
Paul starts off introducing himself as always. The jumping started in verse one where Paul says, “God called me to be an apostle and chose me to tell the Good News.” I stopped on “God called me” for a long time. Saying God called me to something is a phrase used in the church for so many things. Pastors especially use it frequently. Monday in our staff meeting, Pastor Alan corrected himself from saying “hired” to “called” saying that that is one of his pet peeves and he couldn’t believe he said that referring to another Pastor.
Having a calling and simply being hired are two totally different animals. First of all…called by who? Paul answers this: vs. 1-”God called”, vs. 5-”God gave me the special work”, vs. 7-”whom God loves and has called”.
To have a call is more than a duty or a privilege or an honor. It is all of those things, but without sounding too “new age” I would dare to say it is more like a destiny. It’s something you can’t run from. You can try, but you will be miserable until you are doing the thing God is asking you to do.
So what is God asking Paul to do? I kind of laughed when I read further. Each day I either make a to-do list in my head or I actually write what I need to accomplish that day. I’m a list maker. My list usually consists of: laundry, make bed, wash Maggie, grocery shopping…things like that. Paul’s list, which I don’t think he ever flinched over was to: write some letters, make some tents, and to…lead people of all nations to believe and obey (vs. 5)!! It blows my mind how casually he says it. I get so freaked out over the silly tasks I have to do each day. Paul really sets the bar high with his daily list. Does he do it for the lost? No, he does it for God (vs 5).
I think my calling is to start with my family. They are my nation. It’s not enough for them to believe, but they must obey as well. So must I!”