Eph 1:1-2 “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Are you afraid to declare that God has a will and purpose for your life? Are you concerned that someone might think you are boasting if you declare that you are His servant according to His will? Whatever God has called you to do, please take a moment to consider Paul’s example in his opening statement to the church at Ephesus.
Paul was certain that God had called him. Paul was certain that God had given him an apostleship. He was not afraid to declare the mighty work of God in his personal life. It is easy to think that Paul’s experience was so powerful that he could not deny it and perhaps to feel that our experience was not like Paul’s. Was your experience like Peter’s?
Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee. There was nothing going on there other than a couple of brothers taking care of their fishing business. There was no thunder, no earthquakes, no trumpets sounding, and no great light or disembodied voice. Jesus simply said to Peter and Andrew “Follow me.” They immediately left their net and their boat and followed Jesus. Yet, this simple, quiet experience was sufficient for Peter to make the same bold declaration as Paul; “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ… (1Pe 1:1).”
Whether our personal experience with God’s calling in our lives was like Paul’s, more like Peter’s, or somewhere in between, I do not believe that God leaves us in any doubt about Who has called. God’s “caller ID” has worked well since before He spoke the world into existence. I would never encourage anyone to boast of themselves in their service to God. However, like Paul, I would encourage you to never treat with doubt what God has called you to do.
Maybe He has called you to stand before His people and preach the gospel; if so, honor Him by confessing that it is His call. Perhaps He has called you to sing His praise; if so, honor Him by confessing that the talent comes from Him. Some people have the wonderful gift of entertaining His children and making them feel welcome as if they were old friends; if that is your gift, use it to honor Him. Whatever your gift, never deny that you have it and always honor the One whose will it was to give it to you.
The purpose (will) of God in our lives will always serve those that He has sanctified (saints), and those who are faithful in Jesus. Our desire for them, both those that have been well established and those who are newly come to the faith, is that they would have grace and peace. We should always greet such with this desire. It should always be done in a manner that recognizes that this wonderful grace and peace come from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus. There is no other source for our calling or the gifts that are bestowed upon His people.
May God grant us to be boldly humble, never denying His call in our lives and always honoring Him as the source!