‘Each next risk is the biggest one’: James MacDonald talks with Mark Driscoll
Wed May 22, 2013
by Mark Driscoll
Tue May 21, 2013
by Amanda Edmondson
From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
9 types of leaders in Scripture
Mon May 20, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
5 bits of wisdom for the professional Christian woman
Sun May 19, 2013
by Shandel Slaten
The Confusing Language of "Calling," Part 2
It is common Christian parlance to say, "I feel called to do so and so." What we're usually trying to communicate is that we feel God has given us a specific "missional" assignment in his kingdom. I wonder, however, if that language is misleading and harmful.
Why Wait on the Call?
Think of walking through your city one day and coming upon a small, handicapped child laying on the railroad tracks. The child cannot move, and you hear the sound of an oncoming train. Do you stop, get on your knees, and ask if it's God's will to pick up the child? If you don't get a clear sense of God's call, do you move on? Of course not. God's will is clear. Save the life. I often think about this in regards to the question of whether or not we need to go overseas. Jesus made it clear that his will was for people of every nation to know the gospel. Why, then, are so many Christians waiting on a warm and fuzzy sensation—for God to spell out "Afghanistan" in their Cheerios—before they go? The call has been given. Go. If your talents can best serve God's kingdom by using them overseas, why would you wait on a call to do so? So let me say it plainly: I don't think you need to be "called" to go overseas, any more than I think you need to be "called" to live missionally wherever you are. As a disciple, you must ask, "How can my talents best be used in God's worldwide mission?" If the answer is that you can be part of an overseas community-building, Jesus-preaching project, don't wait for a special calling. Pack your bags.
The Area of Greatest Need
Now I often hear the objection, "Why should we send people all over the world? Aren't there lost and needy people here?" Certainly, we should be committed to blessing our local communities and multiplying our churches here in America. But there are still many places in the world where there is no gospel witness at all, which is in direct violation of Jesus' command. While one third of the world's unbelievers are Muslims, only half of one percent of all our resources (i.e. our people and our money) goes toward reaching Muslims for Christ. Does God prefer the Western world so much that it justifies such a lopsided allocation of resources? I meet people who say, "If God calls me to go, I'll go." Perhaps the better posture is, "If God tells me to stay, I'll stay. Otherwise, I'll go." Over there is the area of greatest need. Every disciple of Jesus must consider what his role is in obedience to Jesus' command.