We had a great “Coffee Break Bible Study” today, (you could have too, you are all invited 10am Wednesdays Green Bean Coffee Co, corner of W King and Beaver Sts, downtown York, Pa.). Part of the discussion was on liturgical worship, but we also made time on the Gene Veith book that we’ve been studying. I had to share some of his book today.
“…The point here is not to identify vocations for people who think they do not have one, but to emphasize that our Christian calling is to be played out in whatever our daily life consists of.” (Gene Veith God at Work pp 58-59)
Cannot emphasize this enough, we compartmentalize our life and if it doesn’t “have to do with religion”, then we leave God out of the equation. However, God is who put you there (“For such a time as this” – Esther 4:14), He has you there at that time and place for a reason. Discern His will, be open to what the other person is doing and what God is moving you to do.
“If a person is married, that is his or her calling. Thinking I should never have married that person or I have no vocation for marriage is no excuse for divorce or abandonment. “If anyone lives in marriage, in a certain way of life, he has his vocation”, wrote Luther. “When this is interfered with – by Satan, or neighbors, or family, or even by one’s own weakness of mind – it ought not to yield or to be broken in spirit. Rather if any difficulty impedes, let one call on the Lord … For it is sure that here, in fidelity to vocation, God has insisted on hope and trust in his help” (Exposition of Psalm 127; quoted in Wingren, 195) Yea, especially in this case, we let friends (who way too often just tell us what we want to hear), or family with that whole history etc going on, or Satan who will twist and try to manipulate any way he can. He doesn’t care how, so long as it separates you from Jesus and messes up your life.
We are put there for a reason, just because it’s not what we like, doesn’t make us happy or blah, blah whatever excuse we have, does not mean that God did not intend for us to deal with this. We grow when we deal with the things in our life, marriage, work, worship etc. Running away is not growing, it’s immaturity. When we deal with the issues at home, at work, at church, we have taken a test and passed, not saying always well, but we grow, mature. Hopefully all involved grow and mature and see God’s hand at work. But the world’s idea of “well if it’s uncomfortable, unhappy, then it must be wrong…” no, it means that God has you there to confront, deal with and grow in.
“We can do nothing about the past. The future is wholly in God’s hand. Now is what we have. The future-oriented obsession of today’s culture pushes our attention and our good works to the future, to what we are going to do later. We must “live in the hour that has come,” says Wingren. “That is the same as living in faith, receptive to God, who is present now and has something he will do now ‘(214)'”
“…Whatever we face in the often humdrum present – washing the dishes, buying groceries, going to work, driving the kids somewhere… this is the realm into which we have been called and into which our faith bears fruit in love..”
What you are doing now is important, God has you there for a reason, so do it well, oh yeah sure, sometimes we aren’t in the right place, doing the right things and we know perfectly well we’re not. But I’ve certainly had the experience, something that doesn’t seem all that important and yet, the person I’m interacting with sees it as being very important. Even if that person doesn’t express it, I’ve had the feeling, walking away, that wow, I’m glad I stopped for that, it didn’t seem important at the time, now I can really see God’s hand in this.
Be open to what God is doing, it isn’t always a big splash for you, but it might be for someone else. Lots of things we think are boring and unimportant, God is using to move us somewhere or do something in our life. We are often too quick to chose otherwise and then miss what’s supposed to be happening. Putting our will over God’s will, which is never a smart idea.
I could go on, yea I know, when don’t I? But this would be a good topic for next Wednesday. As I said 10am, the Green Bean Coffee Co, corner of W King and Beaver Sts, downtown York, Pa. Parking in the little lot behind the church. Everyone is welcome no charge, obligation etc, I will even buy your first cup of coffee.