"Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."

Monday, December 20, 2010

Does God Still Call?

 1 The boy Samuel ministered before the LORD under Eli. In those days the word of the LORD was rare; there were not many visions.
 2 One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the house of the LORD, where the ark of God was. 4 Then the LORD called Samuel.
   Samuel answered, “Here I am.” 5 And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.”
   But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down.
 6 Again the LORD called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.”
   “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.”
 7 Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD: The word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.
 8 A third time the LORD called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.”
   Then Eli realized that the LORD was calling the boy. 9 So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
 10 The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!”
   Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.”  (I Samuel 1)

Samuel thought Eli was calling him, but it was God's call he heard.

I was reading a small publication recently and it was talking of people answering God's call to serve in various fields.  Mostly these individuals and couples felt God leading them to other parts of the United States or to foreign fields so they could tell others about Him.  We all know of Abraham's call by God to leave his father and native land to settle in a new place. Moses was called to a leadership role while conversing with God in a burning bush.  Some such as Samuel (mentioned above), Joseph and David were called as youth while still others like Samson, John the Baptist and Jesus were chosen prior to their births with instructions given to their parents. Jonah knew he was called yet went the other way.  He didn't want the call.  Isaiah volunteered when the question was posed. 

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”    And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6)

Noah built the ark.  Nehemiah rebuilt the wall. Deborah lead the nation as judge. David lead the nation as king.  Isaac and Jacob fathered "the chosen people." Elisabeth and Mary mothered the one who "prepared the way of the Lord" (John) and the one who declared himself the Way to the Father (Jesus), respectively.

Men and women.   Visions, dreams, a burning bush, angelic visits.  All felt called by God and the Bible records each of them doing something in the plan of God.

But does God still call people today? Does God still have a plan for humanity where He chooses to use people today?  Ever wonder about His criteria for selecting this person for this task and that person for another?  Does He still use dreams and visions? Any angels visiting?  Or does He use that still small voice that speaks to our hearts?

Listening for the call of God

Maybe God is no longer calling people. All the "big tasks" from the past are over. We need no more prophets, judges, warriors, kings and saviors and we are to be content in this phase of world history with ordinary accounting, doctoring, teaching and factory jobs among scores of others. But then again maybe He still does call people to action.  Even accountants can do something for God.  A teacher can offer her services to women who have been kept illiterate by a society that wants to control them.  One gifted in speaking can raise funds for people in rural Afghanistan who need schools or hospitals.  Doctors, nurses and dentists can go overseas or even stay right here at home and offer their services to those who can least afford medical treatment.  Those motivated to right wrongs can work for changing societal problems from within.  Actually there are quite a number of "big tasks" still left to do!

What do you think concerning the call of God?  Do you ever feel He has called you? To do what? And how did you know?


Amber said...

Does God still call?

Yes, but we all have caller id and are avoiding Him. It's not that He's not a nice guy it's just that He wants a commitment and we're not sure we're ready for that...

But seriously.

I think that 'major' calls - like those to Abraham or any of the other prophets and leaders of the Bible don't happen anymore. There are still quieter calls - people called to the priesthood or to religious life. Called to ministry or missionary work. Called to this job or that because that's the place where they can do the most good. But I think that much of the time we don't hear it because we've forgotten how to listen. Everything is so noisy now days and we're inundated with so much input that we miss that little voice. And I think that, for the most part, that's how God talks to us anymore. Some people may get the more spectacular communique's the angels and trumpets, et. al. but for most of us it's a nudge or a little voice calling.

observant observer said...

I remember reading in her biography that mother Teresa was given a direct call with a clear voice by the Lord Himself telling her what to do. It was only once in a life time, but changed the whole life dramatically.

I second Amber with her thougth about quieter calls that happen nowadays. But there are few people whom I know personally claimed to hear directly from God of certain instructions to do this or that..I do feel curious though, but hey...who am I to judge as long as the message doesn't conflict the message of the Bible. Usually these are people who follow certain charismatic movement in church..or people who experienced certain miracles.

But I agree, at this time, calls are more to do with services that one is expected to do within his or her life. Individual revelations or calls cannot be taken as something that binds everyone nowadays.

Nocturnal Queen said...

Ooh, Amber. I like that. About people having caller I.D. and avoiding God. It's so true. They do avoid Him. And even run from Him.

God does still call people and He does speak to people in various ways. And while I believe that helping others with medical care and education and so on is very important, God's highest calling is bigger than that. To reach the lost and help them make it to heaven. Our spiritual bodies, where we spend eternity, is much more important than our physical bodies. Not that the latter isn't important. It absolutely is. But it has no effect on where we spend eternity. Or it shouldn't anyway. But God can use us to reach souls as we also reach out to help their physical and educational needs.

In other words, we should allow God to work through us and speak through us as we go about our daily lives and as we help others with basic earthly needs.

Irving said...

Greetings of Peace Dear Sister Susanne :)

Of course He calls, and there are many that answer, though not in the way of Prophecy. Here is an old post on my blog that speaks to your question:


Many Blessings,


Suroor said...

I think God still calls. And I love it that He does :)

Carmen said...

I agree with the others that God does indeed still speak and He does call people.

I love what Amber wrote. We have allowed a lot of noise to enter our lives and world and many time we're too busy or overloaded with noise to hear God.

I know God has spoken to me personally, and even called me. There have been many times I cried out for an answer and didn't hear anything. Perhaps because I didn't quiet myself enough, perhaps because God wasn't ready to speak His answer to be yet, maybe because He did speak and I didn't listen.

This past Spring, He spoke. The answer didn't make earthly sense and the call could have been something others would have run from concerning the timing and the sacrifice involved (at that time).

However, there was a peace that came with His voice, and I'm so glad God still speaks today.

Wafa' said...

Yes God still call, look at those amazing people doing great things for others on Earth and you will see how He is call and His call was answered :)

Susanne said...

Amber, ah, you said the C word! LOL @ caller ID and such! :D

For sure I have a problem with too much noisiness. I have a really hard time stopping, being still and knowing that He is God. And,of course, listening to Him. Ugh.

Thanks for what you shared! Lovely thoughts!

Susanne said...

OO, Mother Teresa is a great example. I actually thought of her and the great work that she did while writing this post.Thanks much for what you added! :)

Niki, great points! I totally agree that the spiritual is more important than the physical though both are needful especially since most people don't care about your spirituality if you are unwillingly to feed them if they are starving or clothe them if they are naked! Thanks for what you added!

Susanne said...

Irving, peace to you as well! Welcome and thanks much for your comment and the post. I truly enjoyed what you had to share especially the last paragraph! So lovely to consider! :)

Suroor, yes, me too! :)

Carmen, how wonderful to read your personal story concerning this! Thank you for what you shared about the peace God gave when you answered His call!

Wafa', great! I'm glad you agree too!

Thanks everyone for your answers. :)