Dear special sisters in Messiah,
As you may recall, our focus last week was “Being Called To Serve God Is A Blessing.” Subsequent to concluding that devotional I quickly realized that I had so much more to share, which has brought about a segue for this week’s Sisterhood Love Letter. I do believe that God calls each of us to a far greater purpose than ourselves. I pray that you are faithful in trusting God’s plans for your life, as He alone knows the best direction for each of our lives. Be encouraged that through the power of the Holy Spirit of God, Lord Yeshua leads us, walks with us, and guides our very footsteps in His paths of righteousness. With that knowledge, He equips us with courage and boldness to live each day by faith alone,
Following God’s Call Upon Our Life
Throughout the Bible, numerous men and women willingly followed God’s call upon their lives with complete trust, obedience, and faithfulness. Today, we too, are called by God to follow in His footsteps. Let us examine the lives of Abraham and Matthew, who both unconditionally followed God’s call. Can you imagine what it was like for Abram to pack up all of his belongings, his family, his servants, and his herd to move to an unknown destination? Bear in mind that Abram was seventy-five years of age when he obediently followed God’s call. In Genesis 12:1-3, the Lord said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” As God had promised, Abraham later became the father of Israel, and our sovereign God abundantly blessed him. What a legacy Abraham left behind, one that we are able to emulate over two thousand years later.
Now, let us imagine Matthew sitting at his tax collecting booth, performing his work and making money. Without any introduction, a stranger (Yeshua) walks up to him and says, “Follow Me” (Matthew 9:9). Lord Yeshua does not reveal His name, where He is going, or what life will be like when they arrive at Matthew’s unknown destination. Yeshua simply says, “Follow Me,” and without any hesitation Matthew gets up and follows Him. Can you fathom such a drastic unplanned change in your own life, leaving behind everyone and everything you hold dear, to follow someone in blind faith that you have never known? No longer consumed with making money at the tax booth, there were days ahead for Matthew when he did not have a place to sleep or food to eat. Matthew’s very existence would soon be focused on meeting the needs of others, rather than on his own material desires. He willingly gave up his wealthy luxurious life to become one of Yeshua’s disciples. Matthew obediently followed God’s call and replaced material wealth for spiritual gain, to become one with God. Matthew was richly blessed to witness and record the crucifixion, death, and resurrection of Yeshua, our Lord and Savior.
When God speaks into our lives and calls us to follow Him, our faith needs to be as obedient as that of Abraham and Matthew. By following their examples, we are not to deliberate or debate, but simply follow God’s call without delay. I would be remiss if I neglected to mention that we need to exercise caution and be discerning that the calling we hear is from God alone, not our own mislead futile desires, wants, or needs. If it is truly God who is calling us, we need to respond with eagerness, not allowing anything or anyone to interfere with following our Master. How can we be certain? This requires that we live our lives by faith, recognizing that there is no better place for us to be than in the center of God’s will. Rest assured that God never abandons us while we are following His call.
Throughout history, when God calls a person or a group of people to go somewhere or do something, He is faithful to direct and guide their paths every step of the way. Noah was led by God in the building of the ark. He was then cared for by God’s mighty hand of protection as the ark floated upon the floodwaters. Abram was called and led by God to the promised land, and God fulfilled each of His promises. The Israelites were led out of Egypt by a pillar of fire and cloud. The disciples were led by the very Son of God as He established His Kingdom on this earth. God has safely led missionaries through difficult and trying circumstances. Church planters have been provided the vision and guidance to do God’s work in new areas where they have been called. And, you and I have been led by the very hand of God to this point in our own lives. He will never fail us! In “My Utmost for His Highest,” Oswald Chambers states: “God’s call is for you to be His loyal friend for whatever purpose He has for your life.”
Now I ask my precious sisters: Are you an ordinary woman in whom God wants to do extraordinary things? God desires that for all of His children. Prayerfully ask God for the impossible and begin today to trust in Him to accomplish great things for His Kingdom and through your own life. After some prayerful consideration, I am providing you with . . .
BIBLICAL GUIDELINES FOR FOLLOWING GOD’S CALL
GOD HAS A SPECIAL AND UNIQUE PURPOSE AND CALLING FOR OUR LIFE
Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” The following two verses in Jeremiah 29:12-13 tells us the necessary conditions for us to receive the benefit of His plans, “Then when you call upon Me and come to pray to Me, I will hear you. When you search for Me, you will find Me; if you seek Me with all your heart.“ 1 Peter 2:9 provides us God’s assurance that “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.” We receive the solid foundation of God’s Word, “For we are God’s workmanship (valuable masterpiece), created in Messiah Yeshua to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10).
GOD PLACES A DESIRE AND A PASSION IN OUR HEARTS TO DO THE THINGS HE CALLS US TO DO Philippians 2:13 exhorts us “For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose.” You will receive a love, joy, and passion for doing the things God has created you for and calls you to do.
GOD GIVES US SPIRITUAL GIFTS TO EQUIP US FOR OUR CALLING
“There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all” (1 Corinthians 12:4). 1 Peter 4:10 provides God’s blessed assurance that “God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.”
GOD’S PRESENCE AND POWER WILL ALWAYS BE WITH US WHEN HE CALLS US
The word called means that God specifically called that individual unto Himself for a specific task; first into a love relationship with Him, and next to where His presence and power would be at work. All we are required to do is to respond in faith and obedience, and God will provide His power and strength and whatever else is required to accomplish His call. Moses being called by God to lead His people out of Egypt, is another good example of God’s call and how He provided everything for His people. Please refer to Exodus 3 and 4.
THERE ARE SOME SPECIFIC THINGS THAT GOD CALLS ALL BELIEVERS TO DO
In Matthew 4:19, our Lord Yeshua said, “Come follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Evangelism was at the heart of Yeshua’s call to His disciples, and believers have the same responsibility today. Then Yeshua came to them and said: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:18-20). Until we are being a fisher of men and an active witness for Messiah Yeshua, telling the lost about Him and sharing His plan of salvation for them, we are not completely fulfilling God’s call.
This week, I encourage each of you to ponder the question: “What is God’s call for my life?” This is a question to which most believers wonder about and seek an answer. Let us rededicate ourselves to trust in Him to accomplish great things for His Kingdom in and through our lives. Let us be prayerfully seeking God and asking Him to help us discern His special plan and calling for our life. Then, prayerfully ask God to provide you the faith and courage to follow His call wherever He leads you. God is always faithful in His promise of joy and peace when you are in the center of His will and plan for your life.
I dedicate this devotional to all of my precious sisters (and brothers) who find themselves at a crossroad in their lives during this season. My prayer is that these words, provided by the Holy Spirit of God, may lead you with fresh eyes and a renewal of spirit, to discover and follow God’s call upon your life. May God richly bless you for your obedience.
In His humble service now and for all eternity,
Your sister Eileen