Over the last two weeks, we have discussed hearing God’s voice call you into action and what it means to discern whether the voice you heard was God’s. This week we are going to talk about the importance of affirming the calling that you believe God has given you. We each must seek to hear the wisdom of others for our efforts to succeed. (Proverbs 15:22) This means opening ourselves up to the input of others.
Whom you seek to affirm or refute your calling is very important. You cannot just go to anyone. They need to be people who know you well enough to understand your heart and people who love God. Psalm 1:1-2 tells us, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers, but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on His law he meditates day and night.” Those on the outside of a Christ-following faith life may give great practical advice, but it will lack the understanding of God’s will and spiritual gifting. This is exactly what happened with Rehoboam. He sought counsel from two different groups, listened to the wrong one, and the kingdom of Israel split. This is a drastic example of why turning to godly counsel is so important.
But even the people who walk in the way of the Lord still suffer from poor judgment sometimes. For that reason, it is important to have a couple of your wise counsel who do not hold a vested interest in your calling or the position. I recently made this mistake as I was helping a young man navigate his calling. I fully affirm him for pastoral ministry, and I am excited for him to work alongside me in the harvest. My personal interest in a particular position, however, led me to conversations more about that position than about HIS calling. That was eventually remedied through additional conversations I had with him and others who were helping in the affirmation process.
I know what it is to follow God, but I was distracted by the potential that I saw for this young man within a specific ministry. As you are having the conversations with Christ-pursuing advisors, make sure that the dialogue is open to all of the facets of your calling. It is not just about asking, “Can I do this job?” It is about asking, “Is God calling me to do this?” To help answer that question, the advisors need to also know you. So the first factor is that they must know God, and the second is that they must know who you are to God.
God has gifted you in certain ways (maybe you do not even know all of them, yet), and He will utilize those gifts to support Kingdom growth. This fits in with the final paragraph of the blog from last week. If your advisors do not know how you have been groomed, they may think you are suited for hospitality, when you are called to evangelism. Both can bring glory to God, but that does not mean that you are called for both, or either. Because these advisors know you, you should be able to expect them to be honest with you. They should help you see your strengths and weaknesses. They should care about your whole relationship with Christ, not just a calling. They should support your development even if you go against their advice.
Affirming your calling is often overlooked because many of us think that we know best how God has called us. It requires humility and trust to seek guidance on such a personal front. But it is essential to affirm your calling through godly counsel.
Next week, our topic will be answering your calling in obedience.
May you surround yourself with the wisdom of God,