by Norma Koehne
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I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then said I, ‘here am I, send me’ (Isaiah 6:8).
What amazing sights and sounds accompanied the call of God to the prophets of old. For Isaiah, it was seeing the Lord on his throne as well as the seraphim and the house filled with smoke. For Ezekiel, there was a windstorm, lightning, fire, angels and God on his throne. We can think of other amazing instances of God calling people like Moses and Samuel to do powerful and often dangerous work for him.
In the New Testament, Jesus called his disciples less dramatically, but the call of Saul to become Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles was just as dramatic as the prophets of old. All of these men suffered hardship, and some faced execution as they followed Jesus’ command to preach, teach and baptise. Usually, we are not called to face dangers and hardships in our lives as God’s children, although in some parts of the world, it is still dangerous to follow Christ.
God calls us in a much less dramatic fashion today, although still in a way with great power. It begins in baptism when he says to us, ‘I have called you by name, you are mine’ (Isaiah 43:1). His call to all his beloved children is to spread the word about his love and the salvation won for all by his son, Jesus. Peter sums it up well: ‘You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his wonderful light’ (1 Peter 2:9). The most powerful way we can do this in our workplaces, communities and families is to follow Jesus’ command, ‘Love one another as I have loved you’ (John 15:12).
Thank you, Father, that you have called me to be your voice and hands to tell of your love and salvation and to show your love to all those around me. Amen.