Was I called to ministry?
As I waited on the altar one night I was desperate to hear from Him, to discover my calling. I felt these words drop into my heart:
“I would love for you to love my people…”
Was that God?
It certainly wasn’t the answer I was looking for; no specifics relating to calling or tasks but, it didn’t sound like something the enemy would suggest or something that I would make up.
So, just in case it was God I began my quest: to love His people.
At the time, love and people in general didn’t really come naturally to me. I was more of an introvert by nature.
When it came to church I entered late, exited early. I loved God, loved His church but preferred to ‘love people from a distance.’ In my early Christian days I saw relationships as time consuming, distractions from the real work of the ministry. “Could I please just do some tasks for them so I wouldn’t need to get all involved with them?” Embarrassing now to think back but I’m being honest.
This of course has changed drastically and continues to do so. The closer we get to Jesus the more our walls came down, the more we become who He has truely created us to be.
Years later I look back on this moment confident that indeed it was my Heavenly Father giving me direction. I love nothing more that to sit with people, hear their story, encourage, just be with His people. People now energise me.
Love is to be sincere and active [the real thing—without guile and hypocrisy]. Hate what is evil [detest all ungodliness, do not tolerate wickedness]; hold on tightly to what is good. Romans 12:9 AMP
After the first few verses of Romans 12 encouraging us to use our gifts in humility and unity to build the church, we arrive here; at love. It’s a timely reminder that gifts aside, it is our character that qualifies us.
Luckily we can grow in our ability to love. My love is imperfect. It will make mistakes (many in fact), but His love is perfect. It is perfected in us and through us.
I think we fear really loving sometimes. For our own self preservation. We love, we get hurt, perhaps we even forgive but then our human nature attempts to build walls to prevent hurt from ever coming our way again. We make up rules to protect ourselves:
I’ll go to church, but I won’t serve.
I’ll volunteer but I won’t join a connect.
I’ll make amends with my neighbour but I wont ever invite them around again.
I’ll apologise to my friend but I won’t go out of my way to help them.
We put limits on love and dare to call it ‘wisdom.’
Years ago, when still in youth and newly saved I was hurt by a friend, just typical teenage stuff but it really affected me. I wanted to shut off.
God asked me to continue reaching out, to keep trusting and making friends. But I feared being hurt again. I told Him that I would do as He asked and open up again if He could just promise me that I wouldn’t get hurt.
He spoke words I have never forgotten…
“I can’t promise you that you wont get hurt again, you will. But you need to trust me that when you do I will heal your heart.”
Perfect love casts out fear.
He was right. No beating around the bush, nothing false. It’s life, we get hurt, we hurt others but Jesus called us to live above all else.
We need to love like we have never been hurt.
We need to love unconditionally trusting Him with the outcome.
Of course we need to use wisdom, and there are situations that fall under a different guideline. But you know that’s not what I am talking about.
I am talking about real Spirit led Christianity. It requires more effort to stay bitter and adjust our life so ‘it will never happen again,’ than it does to allow God to heal, and trust again.
Honestly at this stage in some areas of my life I am still working this one out. But my current prayer is: God let me love unconditionally without fear. I don’t want human ‘wisdom ‘ to get in the way of heaven’s agenda. Lord have your way…
How about you? Is God drawing you to love again without measure?
What are your thoughts?
Would love to hear from you xxx