Don’t Take God’s Calling Lightly
This morning I read in the New Testament how the Lord Jesus called the tax collector Levi to become His disciple: “As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting in the tax office, and He said to him, ‘Follow Me!’ And he rose and followed Him” (Mark 2:14).
Levi’s instant obedience changed his life forever. He became the Apostle Matthew who wrote the Gospel of Matthew.
What would have happened if Matthew hadn’t obeyed immediately? He could have said to himself, “I need to finish my obligations in the tax office before I can leave. When Jesus passes by next time and calls me again, I will go with Him then.”
But what if Jesus never again came along this same road? Even if He passed by a second time a year later, what guarantee was there that the spot among Jesus’ 12 disciples was still open? After all, Jesus had only three-and-a-half years to complete His ministry on earth, train His disciples and then die for our sins. He needed disciples who were ready to follow Him right now.
As long as we live on this earth, we are governed by time. We have only a few years for each stage of life. We pass from birth through childhood, youth, adulthood, middle age and old age in a few decades.
Many of the opportunities in life come our way only once. That’s why it is crucial that we think deeply and make our decisions with eternity in mind. Especially as Christians, we must take very seriously what we choose to live for during this brief time we have on earth. Levi the tax collector recognized the privilege God offered him and he never looked back, even when things got difficult.
Don’t take lightly God’s call to serve Him. Did God call you to serve Him in any capacity, whether on a team, in the ministry office, at the church, in the Women’s Fellowship or with your husband? Take it very seriously, even if it is just one single task, such as welcoming visitors, discipling a new believer, giving out Gospel tracts, or encouraging and praying for your husband when he goes for ministry.
Consider this: The God and Creator of the universe has chosen you among more than 6 billion people on earth to do something for Him. He easily could have given the job to thousands of other people more qualified and able than you. But He wanted to bless you with the awesome opportunity to serve Him and help win souls for God’s kingdom. There is absolutely nothing in this world, nor in the universe, that is of greater value than the smallest task Jesus entrusted to you.
Don’t quit—or trade your calling for something else. Over the years, I have seen many brothers and sisters who started so well walk away from fulfilling their calling. Here are just a few of the reasons:
Being offended by someone
Not being given the recognition or position they thought they deserved
Not wanting to humble themselves and accept correction from their pastor or leader
Harboring bitterness and developing a critical spirit
Someone betraying their trust
Feeling lonely and discouraged
Financial struggles and fear of the future
Unwillingness to serve in a place that is not near their home
Misunderstanding between co-workers
Having a materialistic mindset and looking for opportunities for personal gain
Making a mistake and covering it up instead of confessing and repenting from it
Difficulties adjusting to a new mission field
Losing heart because someone spread lies or gossips about them
Pressure from parents and relatives who want their son or daughter making a lot of money instead of doing ministry
Constant complaints and tears from a wife who does not submit to her husband’s leadership
Being lured away from the ministry by someone who offers them an important position, money, travel and other material benefits
My dear sister, Jesus and the apostles faced many of these struggles in their ministry, and we will too. The Enemy always wants to use problems to cause us to quit our calling, or at least to make us bitter and unfruitful. Jesus, on the other hand, desires that we overcome each of these trials and temptations and become stronger and more Christlike in our character and usefulness to God.
God’s Word declares that we as Christians are not helpless or too weak to overcome all these trials: “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world” (1 John 5:4). Jesus promised to be with us always (see Matthew 28:20), and we have received the Holy Spirit, who lives in us and empowers us to be His witnesses (see Acts 1:8).
But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us (Romans 8:37).
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13).
Therefore, let us never entertain the thought of quitting or trading our calling for anything else! Instead, let us make a lifetime decision to be faithful to Jesus and fulfill our calling no matter what we may encounter.
It’s worth it to finish the race and win the prize. Shortly before he was martyred, the Apostle Paul wrote, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7–8).
My dear sister, let us pray for one another that we will all be found faithful in finishing what God has entrusted to each of us.
With love and prayers,
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