Monday, August 4, 2014

The Calling

So here's where I'm at right now.  Just humor me and kick through the list.  It's not an argument...I get sick of those, too.  This is my list about why a job.  No, not "be a pastor" but really work an actual job.  
  1. The universe exists.  Yep, I believe that.
  2. I also believe that that the universe BEGAN.  I'm just not ready to run with the whole multiverse "burrito like" pulsing-shape of time-history.  The universe BEGAN.
  3. Since it began, I know something began that....BEGINNING.  Some kind of cause.
  4. The "something" - the cause - that began the beginning has a personality
  5. That personality wants to be known.
  6. That personality can know every single one of us.
No, #6 isn't some touchy-feely way of viewing the universe.  It's not some paranoia westernized-ego-tripping idea, "I'm so important that THE universe creator knows me." Listen: the very nature of the original cause IS TO KNOW YOU and to know EVERY single person who has ever sucked breath.

I've been in this teaching series on "calling".  I won't get into all the points here, but in a nutshell, according to the bazillion stories in the bible, the creator of the universe's goal is NOT to give you a job or make you do things.  He doesn't want your potential and he doesn't want your results.  

He just wants you.  

Coming to this was huge for me because my whole life I've heard about/been taught that "calling" - the "calling" God has for my life, for instance - is about some job or function or position I occupy, or it's about some big dream I discover, or this one single moment in my life where I hear, "Johnny, do THIS," echoing from the heavens, and, then, BAM, I spend the rest of my life doing that.

But what I'm learning is that calling is all about...the call.  I mean, one person - one personality - speaking to ANOTHER person.  Two personalities speaking to one another, connecting, and what if that is what the original cause - the personality who began the universe...what if that's what he wants?  Just to connect!  Just to call us, and just to have us hear his call.  And then to respond - to call back!  And what if he doesn't want to call from a huge far-away distance but what if it's right up in our hearts, over our shoulders, what if it's this whisper - not a dangerous freak-out whisper but this up close beard against your ear FATHER-whisper: "Love you, child.  Walk this way.  You got this."

1 Timothy 1:12-14 is a chunk of text from a letter written to Timothy (a young leader in the early church) and it was written by his mentor and spiritual father, Paul.  Read what Paul says here.

Basically, he says, "I'm thankful God loves me, and I'm thankful Jesus puts me into service - literally, puts me into ACTION - even though I really, totally suck." 

Countless stories throughout the bible are about God speaking to people - calling to them.  But Paul is saying that, as a leader, it's not his expertise that matters or his experience or his intelligence or the fact he ran around denying God's nature, persecuting people and being a straight up "violent aggressor" - a thug.  

Paul is stoked because Jesus sees him - like, he sees the really bad stuff - and Jesus puts him into service.  That's calling.  Being seen by the one who began everything, being really and totally known, and then being put into service right where you live.  That's calling.  That is awesome.

Here's a cool song that hits this for me.  You Know Me.

And that's why I work a job.  The one who made us all knows us, and is calling us - not because we rock but just because he loves us - and, yep, he wants to put us into action.  No matter what I'm doing or how well (or poorly) I do with what I'm about "today", the fact that I'm being put into service - me! - is pretty rocking.  Huddle OUT.

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