Romans 15:5. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement to give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had.
The first thing I want to draw your attention on this verse is ‘encouragement.’ I remember when I was very young, this great desire came over to me to teach Sunday school, but I was too shy to approach the lady who ran it. To my great joy and complete surprise the lady came over to my place after a couple of days later and asked me if I was interested in becoming a Sunday school teacher. She had no idea that God put in my heart this very desire. This reassured me that God truly wanted me to go ahead and become a Sunday school teacher.
It does not matter what you are called to do or how much you love it, you are going to have dry days, when you feel discouraged and you want to stop doing what He is calling you to do. You may even think it is God’s will that you should stop. But if it is God’s will that you remain, time and time again something will happen to give you the encouragement you need to go on. With me it is usually little things that make a big difference to me. I may become deeply touch by what somebody said to me. When it is time to leave, you are actually encouraged to leave and you may even be given a new vision to follow. I use to teach Sunday school for five years and things changed that I disbelieved in. Instead of teaching the children stories from the Bible they wanted us to teach stories that were fiction and not only that I felt the stories were in fact teaching the children to be disrespectful to others. So I left.
Sometimes God gives you a prophesy and you may have been waiting like me for a whole life time for it to be fulfil, so you try to use your own strength to make it happen and wonder why the doors are always closed and just will not open, does not matter how many prayers you are asking God to open them. I believe the waiting period is due to the fact, God is still training you to fulfil those prophesy He wants you to walk in. Also God ways are not our ways. Things just happen out of the blew. You can be lead towards His goal and not even know it.
Sometimes you go astray and think you are doing the will of God. Sometimes you hear the wrong advice from people. You allow other people who mean well to convince you to go a different direction from what God is calling you to do. The problem I find with Christians they forget what Jesus clearly says in the Gospel that there are sowers and reapers. We cannot all reap, somebody has to do the sowing before you can reap anything. Christians are given by God a great burden for a particular calling. We see the importance of that calling because God gives you enlightenment so that you will respond to the calling. He will give you the love for the people you are calling to serve. Christians are so absorbed in their calling they do not see past it and may talk you into joining their calling when God has put a different need in you to serve Him by.
I read in one of Saint Teresa’s of Avila books that she pities people who have to rely on books to grow in the ways of God. Not in those exact words but that’s what she meant. So many of us have no choice but to rely on books. The problem with books you often can misunderstand what the author is trying to get across. Especially when you first start out. I remember reading books saying that you have to make sure you are not doing things for your own glory. At that time I was really drawn to join a praying order in particular The Carmelites enclosed order. I was so worried that I might be listening to my own ego, I decided that I will do the opposite for a couple years. That way I will know for sure what God wanted me to do. I became a lay missionary. I promised them two years of my life, only if I became sick will I be free to discontinue my service with them. I thought two years would go quickly, but I soon found out differently. I became very sick. I had a nervous breakdown. So what I learnt from that experience might sound funny to some people. But it had very real meaning to me and that was ‘if a man makes a washing machine to wash clothes you do not put cutlery in it, you put clothes in. Because that is why it was made for in the first place.’ To use the washing machine any other way will damage the washing machine. In other words God has made you a certain way. You were given special gifts to be used so that you can serve Him in the manner He has made you. Too many people listen to the wrong advice.
One of the things I have learnt is, that whatever you are called to do, troubles will come that you have to deal with. If you are doing the things you are called to do in the manner God is calling you to do, then you will be able to handle the stress that goes with the calling. You have to rely on God’s strength to get you through so having a prayer life with Him is essential. If you are not doing the calling and you are keeping up a prayer life, you will find things will not work for you, doors will be closed, and the stress that comes with that calling, you will not be able to handle well.
Curses also block blessings! We have a life style in our culture and it has entered in many Churches to curse everybody we are not happy with, even people we love very much. Basically people feel free to judge one another and ignore what the Bible has to say which is ‘To love one another as I have love you.’ Or another example ‘to treat one another as we would like be treated.’ Now I have certainly been guilty of judging many times. It is something that has been greatly encouraged in our generation. Funny enough a generation that considers Jesus teachings out of date, that basically you can do all the evil that you want, because their belief is that God does not exist or He will not pronounce judgement on you if you will not listen to Him. So they claim nobody is going to hell because basically God is too soft to do it, is also the very generation that is guiltier of gossip (cursing) than any other generation before it. You might say there have always been gossip in any generation, and that is true but you only have to look at the Victorian era to see what I am saying, for all the sternness and lack of mercy in the Victoria era they did not gossip anywhere near as much as this generation does. How do I know, because I was alive when the children and grandchildren of the Victorian era was still alive and they were a different breed of people than what people we see today. They were a great deal kinder to their fellow man as well.
Proverbs 13:2-3. A man shall eat well by the fruit of his mouth, but the soul of the unfaithful feeds on violence. He who guards his mouth preserves his life, but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction.
So how you live and what you say matters a great deal whether or not the doors will open for you. These are only some of the ideas to think about I am sure other people can expand on how to know what God’s true calling for you is. I believe He puts the calling in your heart, not in your head. I think when we try to figure things out logically we will not find it. I think love always accompanies the calling that God puts in your heart. Even if He is calling you to do something you do not want to do, like He is offering you a certain cross to carry, which you do not want to carry. He has asked me of this too. There is still love present. The love of God and a understanding of its importance to the expansion of God’s Kingdom, will help you overcome the dread of suffering.
I was going in the wrong direction for a while, trying to make something happen that was not meant for me to do, because I was listening to the wrong advice. Then somebody said what do you really hope for? That was the perfect question for me, because what I really hoped for was not what I was trying to make happen. So I abandon my attempts to try to make something happen that was meant for somebody else who was called for it. As you have guess a great weight was lifted off me and peace returned.
I know where I am going now, I know what God has promised me and so I will keep reminding God of what He has promised me until He gives it to me. I read a prophesy from somebody else, that God is yearning for us to keep at Him and remind Him the promises He has made us, just like children do with their parents. Children as you know do not give up, they keep reminding their parents until their parents give in and fulfil their promises that they made them. Apparently too many people give up and that is not want God wants of us. He wants to fulfil promises He has made. I think another reason why sometimes it takes a long time before He answers is He wants to increase the hunger for it so we will work all the harder for Him when we finally receive it.
I believe that Christian don’t often think just how powerful their prayers can be, so they pray for small things and only for people they know. I believe in praying big because I know God wants to do great things through us.
Article Source: Faith writers