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Waiting on the Call
Understanding God's Purpose for Your Life
Scripture Lesson - I Corinthians 12
Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines. (I Corinthians 12: 17-11)
One of the main ideas relating to the Christian faith is that God calls men and women from all walks of life to serve. As His children, we yearn to know God's purpose for our lives, and we wait for the call. We are eager to serve and we pray to God asking Him for a ministry. We say, "Lord, I am willing," and the waiting begins. When our prayers seem to go unheard, we become frustrated. We forget that serving God requires great patience because our time is simply not His time.
Before we can use the spiritual gifts given to us by God, we must learn to cultivate our talents until we become willing vessels. In our eagerness to serve, we forget that all gifts must work together as one unit just like the parts of the body work together as one body. This lesson is a difficult lesson to learn. True service to God requires teamwork. One person may not be able to accomplish the Lord's plan. Perhaps the Lord is holding us back because he needs us to work with someone that has not yet heard the call.
This lesson is evident throughout Acts. Luke's telling of the early days of the Christian church is replete with examples of teamwork: Saul (Paul) and Ananias, Peter and John, Paul (Saul)and Barnabas. Each individual called into service by God will be used at the right time when he or she is at the right place.
Too often we try to make God's call fit into our personal life plan. We tell ourselves that "God wants us to do this or God wants us to do that" when it is actually our heart's desire. If we truly want to serve God, we must be open and ready to hear God's call. We never know when He is going to use us.
Personally, I am always in awe of those "God-inspired" moments that often take us by surprise. These are the moments when we realize that God has just used us in a way that we could never imagine. Perhaps we were in a position to help another person in need, or perhaps we stopped another person's child before the child ran in front of a moving vehicle.
These are the times when God uses us to serve His purpose. We certainly were not expecting to be a ready and willing vessel at the time, but He was able to use us. We may not all receive the call to be the next great evangelist, but we can still be called. It is up to us to wait upon the Lord and to listen for His voice.