As we continue to look at the topic of a chosen vessel,the discussion shifts to an aspect I dub ‘The Call’.
So here comes God looking for vessels to use and what does He do? He meets us in our mess! Ugh! What kind of a holy, supreme being comes to people in their mess and seeks to draft them into His holy army with a holy cause?! Well, without meaning to sound disrespectful to God, I have to tell you- God actually doesn’t have any choice! You see, I can’t tell God that I’m too sinful for Him to use and send Him over to yonder hills to pick somebody else over there who is more worthy. If He goes, He’s still going to meet up on mess! We all start off in mess and God knows it. (Please note I said ‘start off‘!) So never use the situation you are in to tell God He can’t use you.
Saul (the apostle Paul), is a clear example of this predicament because he was a mess! In Acts 7:58 we see him consenting to and supporting the unjust stoning of Stephen. In Acts 9:1 we see him turning up the heat on Christ’s followers with threatenings and slaughter. In Acts 9:13 we see the disciple Ananias hesitant to encounter Saul even after his conversion because he had heard of the evil he had done to the saints at Jerusalem. In 1 Timothy 1:15 Saul calls himself a chief of sinners. (Did I mention that he was a mess?) But where did the Lord meet him? Right on the road to Damascus with a letter in hand against the Lord! Wow! What an unabashed call! God was not afraid to step into the pathway of a sinner and pull him off it. Jesus introduced Himself to Saul while he was an enemy of the faith, and called him to be an ambassador of that same faith.
But that’s the nature of the call – God takes us out of the kingdom of darkness, drafts us into His kingdom of light, then uses us to fight against that kingdom out of which He took us. The setup is awesome!
Now God approached Saul when he was a sinner. But even after getting saved, God’s call will still come to us in a state when we are not ready! I was told that I was going to marry a minister when I was around 16 years old. And though this was legally the age of consent, the idea of getting Married was incredulous to me. I had never had a boyfriend up to that point and I was just about to enter University- I had my whole life ahead of me and I can assure you that marriage was not in it. In fact, when my dear Women’s President looked at me that fateful night and told me that the Lord wanted me to marry a pastor , my exact words were: Miss, me not even waa married much less fi go married Paasta! (Jamaican Creole). Translation: Miss, if I don’t even want to get married it’s even less likely that I’ll marry a Pastor! (And I meant it!)
But look at me now – not only married but married to a minister and with children!
The point is that God’s call often comes to us when we are not ready for it. That’s just how it is. Don’t let the state in which God calls you prevent you from graciously accepting it, humbly saying yes, and obediently yielding to the process that will prepare you for it.