Did you know that God asks questions? And did you know that every now and then he will ask a question of you? This is the fourth and last instalment (for now) of a series on God’s frequently asked questions. You can find the others here:
I encounter many people seeking purpose in their lives. The need for significance seems entrenched in our DNA and as Christians, we understand that the most significant purpose our lives could is found in God’s will for us. As a result, I hear Christians often ask what his will for them is or what he is calling them to do.
Sometimes, we expect this divine calling to come to us in a voice from heaven amid fire and lightning. In my personal experience and from listening to many individuals over the years, I do not think this is how you will discover the reason God placed you where you are right now. Here is what I think.
Every now and then you encounter something that is not right. Something that needs to change. Others may miss it, but you see it clearly and your heart yearns to do something about it. The people around you may be untouched by it but you just can’t shake the conviction that it needs to change. I think every time you are moved by something like that you hear the words the prophet Isaiah heard in Isaiah 6:8. I think you are hearing one of God’s frequently asked questions:
“Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?”
I have been volunteering at Africa Food for Thought for more than a decade now because the thought of hungry children with no one to turn to in this big, dark world moves me. I have spoken to groups and crowds despite a personality unsuited for such endeavours because I have amazingly good news to share. I have reached out to strangers on street corners and on planes because the thought of anyone spending eternity without God is unbearable. I have spent hours listening to someone’s pain knowing that tonight I will be crying in my sleep suffering pain I could have ignored but leaving that person to quick-fix and cliched one-liners is not an option.
In it all, I have never felt adequate. I was never convinced I am the best person for the job. I merely responded to one of God’s frequently asked questions: ‘Do you see that? Whom shall I send?’
Isaiah responded to this question in the year of a disobedient king’s death and a new one on the throne. Enemies were growing in strength and idolatry was on the increase. The poor were exploited, and the prosperity of the nation was on the decline.
You may live in a part of the world where there is no injustice, no poverty and no suffering and God has no need to ask this question. (Please tell me where this is.) However, you are most likely somewhere where you recently had reason to complain or to say: ‘That is not right!’. If that is the case, don’t wait for someone else to respond. Put up your hand and say: Pick me! Not because of who you are but despite who you are.
It is truly amazing what he can do with your ‘yes’. You will never be bored again, nor will you feel insignificant ever again. Say yes! I dare you! (And take careful note about what you complain… 😊 )
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