This month I'm participating in Kate Motaung's 31 days of free writes, October 2015 edition. At times I can be a little defensive, so please remember I haven't edited any of these (yet), though some may turn out to be starter dough for future blog posts. BTW, Kate suggested we could use the one-word prompts that actually were crowd-sourced this time, and that's what I'm doing. Alternately, bloggers could choose their own topics, or fit the prompts into a specific theme. Exactly like Five Minute Fridays, we get to write unedited for five minutes. Simple as that. Scary as that!
Thursday 01 October: Calling
Maybe especially in the church, the concept of having a call or a calling has sacred status. Sacred? Holy? Set apart? Yes, because in many, possibly in most cases, at least related to an assignment within the church, people sense God is the ultimate source of that claim on us, on our time, on our talents. The formal calling may come to an individual from an officially constituted call committee (in the case of calling a pastor or other authorized church staff), from a pastor or church council, session, bishopric, or other configuration of church leaders
But people outside the church and the churches often have a sense of being called to a certain career, to a particular path, to a designated task. Whether or not they're formally religious, whether or not they're spiritual, "other," or one of those recently publicized nones, they've assessed what they're good at doing, their education and experience, and they've looked at the needs around them. They've considered what counsel others have given them, and they've claimed a calling to participate in life, to serve the community and the world in a certain way.
If there's a call, there must be a caller. Right? In the church we claim God ultimately calls us, extends those callings, even though most often reach us through the voice and agency of other humans. If there's a calling, there's a caller, and then there are those who have been called. You know the famous passage from Romans that talks about us humans calling on the Lord?! Interesting stuff!
Romans 10:12-15a, NRSV
12For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call on him. 13For, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved." 14But how are they to call on one in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in one of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone to proclaim him? 15And how are they to proclaim him unless they are sent?
So we humans are the callers, and God is the called—the One with a calling!