Jesus commanded us to love others like we want to be loved. I say we let this be the compass to define our calling. If Jesus wants us to love people, then our love for people is what's most important for you to fulfill what God wants you to do, i.e. your calling.
This begs the question, "who do you love?" This is a much more scriptural question to define your calling than "God, what do you want me to do?" The "who" defines the "what."
Once you define the who, expect God to empower you in that area. Expect God to give you insight, provision and wisdom to act on your love for people.
We're quick to ask God for provision or for wisdom for what we think needs to be done but what if you let him empower your passion for people? How would that change your approach to ministry?
In this week's message I go into much more detail on the subject of God empowering your passion. Click above to listen to this message.
In this passage we see John, the self proclaimed one who Jesus loved, rebuke someone for walking in the power Jesus just gave to the disciples. John's reasoning is that "he walks not with us."
Luke 9:1 When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. 3 He told them: “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt. 4 Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. 5 If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” 6 So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.
49 “Master,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us.” 50 “Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.”
I find Jesus' answer fascinating. He didn't tell John to find the man so Jesus could teach him, he didn't ask if he was a Jew or if he knew the Bible, he didn't anything but tell John to leave him alone. Personally I think he responded this way because he was confident in the leading of the Holy Spirit for this man. I reference this passage for one main point, this man heard that power was available and he acted on it. This is what I want for you, you simply act on inspiration in the area of your passion.
In this next passage we see God's willingness to provide exceedingly, abundantly above all that was needed.
2 Kings 4:1 The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.” 2 Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?” “Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a small jar of olive oil.” 3 Elisha said, “Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don’t ask for just a few. 4 Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.” 5 She left him and shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. 6 When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.” But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” Then the oil stopped flowing. 7 She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.”
The oil only stopped when she ran out of pots. KEEP PUTTING OUT POTS!! Put out pots before the Lord for your passion toward others, pots for your family, for your job, for your future and for your ministry. Your heart is your pot in which God pours his love so you will overflow with his fulness.
How does this apply to you?
Ephesians 3:16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. 20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
This is a perfect functional description of how grace works in the heart of a human. This is a New Covenant fulfillment of the filling of the pots from 2 Kings. Your heart is the pot in which God pours his love to make you whole and meet your needs and then flow out of you to love others.
How does the story of the woman and the pots of oil relate to you?
What can you take away and apply to your life?
Take some time to turn your heart toward God and allow him to love you. Pay attention to any inspiration that may arise in your area of passion and think of a way to act on it. Share that with the group.