Get Up and Go
I am set to leave for Dubuque, Iowa to begin my theological education this August. I am both excited and scared. The school and the few students and faculty I have interacted with have been wonderful. I have never been to Iowa, don’t know anyone, and will be on my own for the first time a long way away from family or friend. Yet, I am sure to meet new friends and adjust to the new environment. On paper things are certain, but in life nothing is certain… but death and taxes as the old adage goes. I feel called to go to seminary. I don’t know if this journey will end with me pastoring a church or what. Only God knows that. I know seminary is part of my journey of faith.
I would like to reflect on Abraham’s calling in Genesis 12 and how this part of the Hebrew Bible informs our Christian faith.
God calls Abram to have a special relationship with Him, a particular kind of relationship that changes the course of his life and others forever. God has a plan to rescue and restore the world from sin that plan begins with one man. He promises to make Abram a great nation, to bless and protect him, and ultimately to bring true and lasting blessing to the world through his children. To enter into that promise, Abram must do something daring; he must leave everything he knows and put his trust in God.
The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. (Genesis 12:1)
I was asked recently if I was scared, if I was sure I wanted to go, if it was necessary to go to Iowa. Without thinking I said, “Abraham was scared when God told him to get up and go. Jesus didn’t really want to go to the cross. Yet, both went because God called them. They went. Just as I will, because I feel called to get up and go.”
In each life God calls, not every call is to the same thing. We can be called to change how we interact with each other, what we do for a living, where we live, how we spend our time and money, how and where we worship, how we understand God or life. God can call us in countless ways. God calls us daily in fellowship with Him and others. We can be called in or out, to or away, with or away from. There is not only one call or one way to answer the call. The point is to understand that God calls us, we don’t choose when we are called or to what we are called to.
For Abram it was a call to leave his homeland and go to a far country. Abram’s call can be symbolical of the journey each of us takes in this life. We can use the journey of Abram among many others chronicled in the bible and church history as a map for our spiritual journey, but it is important to know that God doesn’t call everyone in the same way. God meets us where and when we are and deal with us there calling us forward into the kind of people that can and will live in His Kingdom.
I was called out of the Mormon Church and into the Christian faith. A long winding road that I am still on; I don’t know where this road is leading me. I have committed to the way of Jesus and whether it brings blessing or curse, it is my path. I was called to a Presbyterian church. While there have been times where I have been at odds with this church, I value the community I have found. It has helped me grow into a more mature faith.
I have been called to write this blog and I feel a call to write books, and further develop my ideas I have posted on this page. To my faith, understanding, and love with others in the hope it will help others in their faith journey. I have been called to seminary.
I don’t know where all this is leading and I don’t need to know. I just need to get up, go, and trust God to handle the later. It is the now. How I meet the present moment that is in my hands. How I face both the good and bad that will come my and allow all of it to be a blessing to me and others.
Where have you been called? Have you been called into the world of politics, law, or healthcare? Have you been called to care for the lost, sick, poor, and abandoned? Have you been called to care for animals or the environment? All of these and others are God callings.
I believe that each dream from our heart that agrees with our true self and is aligned with the gospel of Jesus Christ is a call from God. As Christians, we are called to be the hands and feet of God in a broken world. Each of us, whether we self-identify as Christian or not are called to love and serve others, no matter who we are we are loved by the Creator-King of the universe. We can accept the grace of our Lord and Savior, and extend the same love and grace to others.
That is what a life of faith is all about.
Grace and Peace to all!