Is This My Job Or Is This My Calling?
By Jen Tringale
The word calling is a word we generally set apart to describe those selected for a specific task or purpose. When I was growing up in church; this word ‘calling’ was generally reserved to describe a person that was called to be a pastor, teacher or maybe a missionary. It wasn’t ever actually said to me but the assumption was that those that were “called” were sort of the ‘rock-star’ ministers given the task to really do something for God and the rest of us were merely here to attend church, maybe volunteer and cheer them on.
However, this word ‘calling’ speaks to the fact that there is divine purpose attached to what a person does and it is important to know that it does not always require a pulpit. Many times we hear someone say that they have “found their calling." While a lot is being said in recent years about the topic of purpose or calling, we ought to make sure we rightly define exactly who it is that is called and for what purpose.
In Ephesians 4:1 Paul the apostle writes and very strongly admonishes ALL believers to "walk worthy of the vocation wherewith you are called"…"
The word ‘calling’ here simply means, "A divine invitation to service or a summons to employment."
This vocational calling that Paul is speaking about is backing up what God originally instituted with Adam in Genesis Chapter 2, “…to be fruitful, multiply and to have dominion…,” and then again when He gave us the great commission in Matt 28 and in Mark 16. In each case God is reiterating His plan that every believer has been issued a call, an invitation to a kingdom assignment. We are to impact our culture to bring together His family and to establish His kingdom in the earth. It is because of this call – this purpose – that you and I are here.
It is vitally important that we understand that you and I did not just come from our parents, we merely came through our parents. In Jeremiah
1:5 God says, "Before you were even in your mother’s womb I knew you."
At some point God our creator had the idea of you and because He does everything with purpose attached to it, He also attached to you a calling, a purpose, and a divine invitation to employment!
This divine calling will utilize the gifts, talents and abilities that God has given each of us to in some way be an answer to a problem and to bring a solution to societies’ needs. This changes how we approach what we do vocationally. For the believer, there is no such thing as mere secular employment but a better description would be that you have a vocational calling.
In fact, Jesus made this plain when He first announced His purpose and strategy for how we were to carry on when He was gone when He told Peter, “…And upon this rock, I will build my church,"(Matthew 16:18).
Jesus used the Greek word "ecclesia" here when He spoke of His church. Without going into lengthy historical detail, let me give you a snapshot of what Jesus was referencing.
The “ecclesia” was a roman legislative group made up of people very skilled in their various vocations. The Romans would send out the ecclesia into their newly defeated territories. This skilled group was made up of law-makers, judges, educators, artisans, musicians, builders, architects, as well as others. Their job was to take positions of influence throughout the cities of these newly conquered territories. As they began to function in their vocations, they were assimilating the people into Roman ways of living. Slowly, thru their influence, they would begin to transform the people’s thinking and their way of life into all things Roman! They began to teach in the schools using Roman methods. The musicians shifted the sound, lawmakers introduced Roman policies, and on and on it went.
All of this was a strategic way to get the people to forget their old identity and in a matter of time the ecclesia would have transformed the culture to look, sound and function just like Rome. Isn’t it interesting that this is the concept that Jesus referenced when He spoke of building His church? He was not speaking of us meeting in a building; rather He spoke of us building the kingdom in the culture we are in! To be salt and light, to be a city set on a hill, which speaks of having positions of influence.
For years we have tried to change the culture merely through the church alone, but it takes more than the 5-fold ministry gifts. Their function is actually to equip the saints; which is why it is vitally important that we as believers are planted in the local church where this equipping can take place. But that equipping is to help all believers, men and women of God to function in their calling. That those who are educators, care-takers, law-makers, musicians and many others would take their place of influence thru the ability and the anointing that comes with the calling!
Let me sum this up with 3 basic principles every believer needs to know about their calling.
- God always has a plan and He has a plan for you. Don’t settle for anything less.
- Who God calls He equips. You’ve got the raw materials of what it takes.
- Never judge what you do as insignificant. Allow the Holy Spirit to ignite the destiny seed of God in you and lead you into the calling He designed you for.
I call you blessed,
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Jen Tringale Ministries
PO Box 161205
Fort Worth Texas 76161