Darren Roy shares what God has taught him through Proverbs 3:5-6.
God has a plan for every person born on this planet, which means that every believer has the potential to engage with God in His mission of redemption.
We often say that someone's part in that mission is their 'calling'. I do not believe that anyone's calling is simply to breathe excess oxygen. Most sincere believers know deep down that God is calling them to fulfil their part in His great plan.
When I became a believer I had this sense from God that He was calling me to ministry. There were little pictures that would come to mind and the 'still small voice' inside was saying I was 'called', but it was a cloudy view as if looking through a frosty window.
There were a number of Christians around me who seemed so sure of their calling and it seemed to me they were 'running their race' whilst I was searching for the starting line. I had a feeling of frustration that if God didn't make my ultimate calling clear, how would I know what direction to run? Since that time I have met many others with a frustration-tinged cry, "what is my calling?"
The moment my frustration changed to excitement was in 2002, when a ministry visiting our church taught on Proverbs 3:5-6. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths." This was a spiritual light bulb moment for me. Instead of trusting my ability to become what God has called me to be, I will choose to trust Him with all my heart. I will not try to work things out by leaning on my own intellect, but instead I will acknowledge Him in all my ways. The promise is that God will then direct my paths and make them plain.
Being a doer of Proverbs 3:5-6 has been my story since. It was often like God would give me a checkpoint of the next stage He was calling me to. First I was called to develop my relationship with Him, which included adjustments of attitudes and hang-ups that He highlighted. The only way to develop my relationship with Him was to trust Him with all my heart and to acknowledge Him, instead of using my natural mind. His promise was true and He directed my paths to develop intimacy with Him.
Next I was called to be a house-group leader and He showed me that checkpoint. To get there I had to trust Him and acknowledge Him. Eventually I became a house-group leader. Later He showed me the next checkpoint was to be an elder of the church. This didn't mean suddenly just becoming an elder, but applying Proverbs 3:5-6 to follow His steps to get there. When I was an elder He showed me the next checkpoint of being the assistant pastor, then later the checkpoint of pastor, then senior minister; all reached through the application of those verses from Proverbs.
There are many other things He has called me to, including being ordained, a fire service chaplain, and an itinerant minister. All these things I could see through the frosty glass in my early days as a believer, but couldn't fully make out what they were. He led me to these roles by Proverbs 3:5-6.
On the journey God has taken the routes He knows are best, even though they wouldn't make sense to my own reasoning. My training to be a leader of the church included studying for a BEng in Mechanical Engineering. I was acknowledging Him and that was the path He took. The lessons I learned in being disciplined, having peace under pressure and trusting Him through engineering, (a subject I am weak at), were invaluable. I would never have taken this route if I clearly knew my calling because I would have tried to get there myself.
My encouragement to you today is to follow Proverbs 3:5-6 and let God lead you to your calling. Let go of your frustrations of not having all the answers, or a clear road map. Instead, trust the Lord and allow Him to be the author and finisher of your faith. Seek the next checkpoint and then seek Him to take you there.The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.
Emmanuel Christian Centre
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