During May I preached a series on the call of God (you can hear them via a subscription at iTunes or at the audioblog listing).Â In one of the messages I wanted to show the people how they could be prepared to receive God’s call. But I ran into a problem. Over and over again, God didn’t call people who were quietly sitting around waiting for a call. Instead, the norm proved to be a call that interrupted their lines, a call that was the last thing they expected.
My own call was unexpected. For most of my high school life, I had planned to go into physics or astronomy. During those same years, however, God was at work, drawing me in. In the fall of my senior year I finally responded to God’s call to a life with him (what we call becoming a Christian). Right about that same time came a call to ministry. I didn’t want anything to do with it. Surely God was confused. I had other plans. But God interrupted.
God seems to like doing that. Abraham, Moses, Gideon, David, Paul – all interrupted. So I had a set aside my yearning for a nice neat method I could give my people to get involved with God’s call. There were no “Four Steps to Hearing God’s Call,” so I had to shift my focus.
You who are preachers or teachers, does God – or kingdom reality – ever mess with your messages?
Happens to me all the time… funny how we think we’ve got it all together and then the Holy Spirit shows up and shows us how wrong we were! The trick is in knowing when to listen and how to respond.