Walking Worthy of our Calling by Ven. S. O. Enike

DEVOTION LED BY VEN.S.O. ENIKE DURING CLERGY RETREAT

AT OUR SAVIOUR’S CHURCH, IKENNE

ON THURSDAY, JANUARY 22, 2015

Text: Ephesians 4: 1-16

Theme: Walking Worthy of our Calling

Introduction: Calling is used both in the secular and the spiritual. It comes as a strong desire or passion in the secular world to do a particular job or become an expert in a particular field, especially one in which someone is able to help other people. For instance, an individual may have passion for imparting knowledge on others. Such a person will strive to become an educator or instructor in a chosen field, another person may have passion for looking after the physical and mental wellness of people, therefore, he or she will focus on the medical field.

However, spiritual calling is different in that, this comes from God. It is not about what one chooses to do, rather it is about whom God has chosen to use as vessel, therefore, it is Divine summons to carry out God’s assignments.

This much Apostle Paul knew when he addressed his letter to the church at Ephesus while he was imprisoned in Rome. He was so close to the church that he spent over three years with them. In Acts 20:17-38, detail account of his meeting with the church elders in Ephesus is given, He was not so much bother about his incarceration, but he was concerned about Christians in Ephesus and of course those of us gathered here keeping to the standard of our calling. The implication of this calling is that we are representatives of Jesus Christ on earth. It is a great privilege.

Hear this message from Jesus Christ about our calling in John 15:15,16 “ No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from my father I have made known to you, you did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the father in my name He may give you”. In the light of this eternal truth, we can say that our calling is unique.

Let us therefore, take note of the following facts about our calling:

  • Our calling comes with some cost

When God called Abram who later became Abraham, he was asked to leave and go away from three things, namely: (i) his country (ii) his people (iii) his father’s house.

We are called to keep away from sin and then turn to God, in counting the cost, our Lord Jesus Christ in Luke 14:26 puts it this way, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple”. Our calling demands that we keep away from evil conduct and evil doers. And that natural desires must be overcomes by Divine Grace.

The message of Apostle Peter in Acts 2:40 is also instructive … “Be saved from this perverse generation”.

  • Our calling is accompanied by God’s promise

The call of Abram in Genesis 12:1-3 was followed with promise from God, six times

  1. I will show you a land
  2. I will make you a great nation
  • I will bless you
  1. I will bless those who bless you
  2. I will curse him who curses you
  3. In you shall all the families of the earth be blessed.
  • The place of our wives is important in our calling

When Abram received the call to leave his country, people and father’s house, he did not leave his wife behind. They went together. This was in accordance with Genesis 2:24, which states that the man and woman shall become one flesh.

  • The calling from God comes with specifications

When God called Noah to build an Ark for preservation of some lives during the flood, he received specifications as regards the building of the Ark. Genesis 6:13-22, verse 22, specifically states that Noah obeyed all the commands of God.

There is an account of a man of God in 1Kings 13, who was sent from Judah to Bethel. The Lord told him, “You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the same way you came”. His initial response was of obedience, but later he was deceived by an old prophet in Bethel telling him that God had sent him to tell the man of God to eat and drink in Bethel. The consequence of his action was that a lion killed him,

  • In our calling, God makes use of ordinary things in us for extra-ordinary purpose

Exodus 4 tells us of Moses encounter with God. He was with an ordinary shepherd rod. When the calling of God came upon him, double miracle was performed on the rod. The rod turned to a snake and then the snake turned to a rod. This time it was no longer Moses rod as a shepherd, it became God’s rod in the hands of Moses, his chosen vessel.

  • Calling from God is with clear-cut message

In Luke 4, when Jesus came to the Synagogue in Nazareth, he opened the book of prophet Isaiah from where he found in clear term the purpose of His earthly ministry. He says,

  • “The spirit of the Lord is upon me because He has anointed me
  • To preach the gospel to the poor
  • He has sent me to heal the broken hearted
  • To proclaim liberty to the captives
  • And recovering of sight to the blind
  • To set at liberty those who are oppressed
  • To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord

In Paul’s message, he identified some virtues needed for a worthy calling. Humility and gentleness. When we live by these virtues, it does not mean we are inferior to other people. We must not see ourselves better than others. The presence or absence of these virtues determine our character.

Billy Graham once said that: ‘’When wealth is lost, nothing is lost, when health is lost, something is lost, But when character is lost, everything is lost’’.

Some years ago, I saw on the TV, Prince Williams who is a grandchild of Queen Elizabeth, he went to visit some British Soldiers who came back from Iraq and Afghanistan with injuries, some of them were on wheel chairs. As he was addressing them, he would squat before each one of them as he talked, thereafter when he granted interview to journalists, he said that his late mother had taught him never to stand over a man in a wheel chair to talk with him, he should rather squat. That was his own way of showing humility even to the disabled.

Conclusion: As men of God who are called by His grace, the demonstration of strong character expected of us by God will bring love, unity and peace.

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