The Quiet Invitation

The truth is most of the time I don’t feel called.

Maybe that’s a bad thing to say since I’m a minister and all, but it’s the truth.

I mean, I love those stories in the Bible. You know, the ones where people get this amazing, supernatural interaction with God. The ones where he points them to a job or some people and basically says, “This is where you’re supposed to be. So get off your rump and get moving.” I like those stories. They make sense.

Moses had his burning bush; Jacob, his amazing dream of angels & a staircase. Samuel had a mysterious voice that wouldn’t let him sleep. Gideon played a game with God and a fleece. Poor Paul was struck blind as he was walking down the road. These tales inspire me. They assure me that there is a purpose to our lives.

But they don’t really describe my life.

I’ve had no burning bush. The only voice I hear in the middle of the night is from my children. The only lights I see on the road are red, yellow or green.

Most days I wake up and go about my life as normal. I get my kids ready for school. I go to work and perform my duties. I cook dinner with my wife and we put the kids in bed. We enjoy a few moments together and then retire to bed.

Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

Something in me longs for the supernatural calling, the amazing experience that points me in a very specific direction. But it’s never come.

And yet if I pay attention, if I really listen and look, the call is all around me.

It comes from the people that move around my life every day. My wife and my children. My coworkers. The children and teachers who go to school in our building every day. The people shuffling in and out of the aisles at the store where I shop. The guy pumping gas at next to me. The couple I’m doing pre-marital counseling for this week. The other parents picking their kids up from the elementary school.

All day, every day a quiet call breaks its way into my life: Will I point this person to God? Will my eyes and hands and words speak grace and peace and love into their lives? Will I make my life and my talents and my heart available to them? Will I be a present embodiment of Jesus to that person, right now?

whisper1It’s a quiet invitation, more a whisper than a bang.

But even when I don’t feel like it, I am called.

And no matter my job, that is my vocation.

So I pray that you have a loud blast of a call. They make for amazing stories. But I also pray that if, like me, that call never comes, that you will hear the quiet invitation. That you will see the job laid before you today. That you will understand your true vocation in this world.

And may we all today say, “Here I am.”

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