Close
  • CONNECT WITH US
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Four Myths You May Believe About Your Calling

As a Life Purpose Coach I believe that we are all called, have gifts and talents, and are incredibly loved by our Creator.  Everything that we encounter in life prepares us for the next season in our calling.

I also believe that every one of our gifts are as important as the next persons.   We are all working towards the same goals and each and every one of us are highly loved and valued by Jesus!

Four Myths You May Believe About Your Calling

Image: StuMinGames

What I’ve discovered over the years is that many women have an incredibly difficult time discerning what that calling is. The trials of life and the many mixed or misunderstood messages they have heard from various teachers have left them feeling like they never measure up to what God has for them to do.  For these struggling women, certain myths about calling are getting in the way of discovering what God truly has for them.

If you’re feeling lost trying to discern God’s calling for your life, consider these myths that may be tripping you up.

Myth #1: It’s About You  

The process of discovering your calling may necessitate some serious self-reflection, but make no mistake: It’s not really about you. Calling is not about self-fulfillment. It is a discovery of your preciousness, your beauty, and your gifting…a plan set up for you from before you were born to fulfill… and the revealing of it is directly related to what you have experienced in your life through every trial and every experience, both positive and negative, to prepare and train you to be able to see others come to know who He is through your life.

Calling is a revealing and fulfillment of God’s will for your life.

Many people experience a special sense of satisfaction that comes from exercising their God-given gifts, talents, and passions, but that sense of fulfillment is a byproduct of being in God’s will, not the goal.

To discern what God’s will may be, you do need to look inward. You must seek to “know yourself” in order to discover God’s unique creation in you. Sometimes we can’t see outside of ourselves and being in community with other’s who know you can help to get a better picture.  This is why we need each other.

And sometimes we miss the obvious– thinking it couldn’t possibly be important enough to be a calling.  I have had women come to me in their season of child rearing, crying because they just don’t feel important to God because He has not revealed to them a calling.   And there beside them stood their children.

Do you know raising children is one of the highest callings there is?   To raise a child to love and honor God with their own lives is the calling of a Mother.   Yes, one day those babies will be on their own and you will be free to pursue other gifts and callings, as each season of your life reveals more and prepares us for the next season.

Myth #2: If It’s Uncomfortable, It Can’t Be Your Calling

Nope, not even close.   Figuring out your calling isn’t an instant ticket to a smooth life and career.  As a matter of fact sometimes we get so stuck in our comfort zones of dysfunction, we would choose to stay there, because at least it is familiar, right?

Knowing what you are meant to be doing is really just the beginning of what may be a long and arduous journey of hardship and defeat. Some of the most successful, inspired people throughout history have  pursuit of their paths that has included feeling like a failure….but rest assured,

Not one of your failures is wasted…it is all a part of the plan, and what makes the difference is that you

DON’T GIVE UP!!

For most of my life I struggled with what I was doing, even when I was very busy doing “the work of the Lord”, the way I saw it…

God is never finished with us and even while I was so busy, make no mistake, He continued to reveal to me those places I kept hidden that needed to be healed.  I fell flat on my face many times.

I faced plenty of hardships and failures at work and in my personal life. These challenges helped me grow and learn more about God and more about how God created me to serve him, eventually leading me into Life Coaching much to my surprise.   Now that I am a Life Coach and have been for many years, I continue to enter into places of so much pain I sometimes question where He is taking me now.

Your calling is most of the time a stretch assignment. Moses is a great biblical example:

He had no doubt about what God wanted him to do.  God spoke to Moses through the burning bush, giving him clear marching orders about his next steps.

Isn’t this what we all kind of wish for when we’re searching for our calling?

But Moses’ calling didn’t sound all that great to him:

“But who am I that I should go?”

Moses questioned God, voicing the fear,

“I’m not important enough.”

But God answered, “I will be with you.” Then, Moses continued pressing back, asking, “What if they do not believe me?”

“I’m not impressive enough!”

In response, God provided him with miraculous signs. But it still wasn’t enough for Moses, who came back with the worry, “But I am slow of speech and tongue.” 

“I don’t know what to say.”

God assured Moses that he would speak through him.

Moses was called to a task God designed for him, but it clearly didn’t feel good.  He tried every way he could think of to convince God that he was the wrong man for the job, and then finally, when that didn’t work, he came right out and asked God to “please send someone else.”

Your discomfort doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re on the wrong path.

Myth #3: Choosing Wrong Can Thwart God’s Will

I know women (and men too) who seem to agonize endlessly over every major choice in their lives, calling included, because they’re afraid of choosing wrongly. It’s good to want to make the best choice you can, but at some point you just need to make a choice and go from there. If you find yourself worrying excessively about your calling, ask yourself whether this is really about discerning God’s will or whether you may be trying to control God’s will.

Your choices are important, but, when you are seeking Him with your whole heart, no choice you can make is outside of God’s sovereignty. Seriously… it is NOT that easy to miss God.  Do you think He is not able to transcend your humanness, and lead you right into His perfect will…even when you think you are the one making the decisions?

If you had asked me 20 or 30 years ago where I would end up, I never would have foreseen the course my life would take.  I now look back and am just amazed by God’s providence over all of it.

Myth #4: Your Calling Is Settled

Discovering your calling isn’t something you do once, or even twice. It’s not something you get to check off of a list and move on from.

The life of a Christian entails a constant process of discovering your calling. Just because God has called you to a particular purpose at a particular time doesn’t mean his plans for you are the same in every season… each season of our lives has a new calling that builds on the last one… nothing stays the same forever.

Looking back at my own life, I can see God shaping and shifting my calling over the years.

Each chapter of my life God continued to call and lead me through one season to the next.   Some of the things that happened to me to bring me to this place today is astounding, painful, challenging, and sometimes unbelievable.   In every phase my calling has looked and felt different, but God has been a consistent foundation throughout.  And even when I was in total denial about my own issues that needed work, His will was accomplished in other’s lives through my calling.   Astounding to me.

Who knows what the next chapter of life will bring?

Everyone’s calling is going to look different—and each season will bring a new process of discernment. Just remember, God is in control. He loves you and me, and his will for us will always bring us closer to him.

May you begin your discernment journey with courage and humility!

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Had Jon Wickes and Ben Law wanted to avoid a calling to foster care, they had a good list of excuses at their disposal. At the time, both men were in their mid-20s. Both were single. Neither Jon nor Ben were adopted. Yet, one night out of the month, along with their Missional Community group, they hosted a parents’ night out at the For the City Center for local foster families.

serving foster parents through childcareIn the fall of 2012, The Austin Stone Community Church featured a sermon series on adoption and, as Jon and Ben’s community walked through the series, they began to feel convicted by the Spirit to serve in the area of adoption and foster care. But this proved challenging. The group was made up of unlikely candidates—mostly singles in their mid-20s.

“This is great,” Jon remembers, feeling the tension. “But how are we supposed to respond? We weren’t in a place to foster or adopt kids at that point.”

serving foster parents through childcareStill, the community group didn’t allow their life stage to overshadow the command in Scripture to care for the orphan. They continued to talk about what it might look like for their group to serve somehow, and eventually they met with Becca Harris, the Children’s Director at Austin Stone’s St. John’s Campus.

“There was a meeting with a couple of people in our MC and they basically said, ‘We are a group of single people, but we want to be obedient to care for the widow and the orphan, so what can we tangibly do to help?’”

Becca suggested that one of the things foster families needed most was childcare.

Childcare options can be extremely limited for foster parents. For the protection of foster children, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Service requires that children only be left in the care of individuals who have gone through a state-mandated certification program. Completing the program can be taxing as it requires background checks, hours of training, and navigating convoluted requirements.

serving foster parents through childcareStill, the community group was undeterred. They began undergoing background checks and started the certification process while discussing how they might provide childcare for foster families.

“We thought, Well, we’ll just meet people who have foster kids, and then we’ll just go to their houses to take care of their kids or have their kids come over to our house and have an MC block party … We soon realized that’s not a good idea.”

Eventually, the church agreed to partner with them to provide the facility and front all of the costs and, in the spring of 2013, the For the City Center played host to the very first Parents’ Night Out.

serving foster parents through childcareThe initial event was a great success. As the members of the MC began interacting with kids and parents, they saw how deep of a need they were truly meeting. It was a tangible reminder that they, too, were adopted by God as sons and daughters through Jesus’s payment of sin and defeat of death.

“There was a dad who dropped off his kid who was so excited,” Ben remembers. “He said he had to go to the mall because it had been so long since he and his wife had been on a date that he didn’t have a shirt to wear for date night.”

Unfortunately, the MC was only able to host the event a few more times before the program was put on hiatus since the service they were providing was a bit unorthodox. Even still, the group continued to push forward. They used this break to ensure that everything they planned was in compliance with state licensing standards. This time also allowed new members of the MC to become foster care certified.

serving foster parents through childcareFinally, after a nine-month break, Parents’ Night Out was restarted. Now, the members of Jon and Ben’s community group have expanded their commitment from one night a month to two. They are also seeking additional certifications that would allow them to provide in-home care for foster children when necessary.

James 1:27 (ESV) defines pure and undefiled religion as this: “To visit orphans and widows in their affliction.” It would have been easy for Jon and Ben—two young, single men—to decide this verse didn’t apply to them. Instead, they looked to their own need for adoption into God’s family to inspire and empower their service. Serving children and families in the foster care system has not been easy, and they have had to sacrifice much. However, without Christ, our adoption would have been impossible, and yet it cost Him everything.

“We were not convenient,” Jon says. “I wasn’t in a good place when Jesus began pursuing me, and I didn’t want to be a part of His family, but He didn’t stop pursuing me.”

serving foster parents through childcare

The Austin Stone Story Team is a community of artists who tell stories of gospel transformation. We are photographers, writers, editors, filmmakers, and musicians on a common mission to use our gifts for His glory.

(By The Austin Stone Story Team. Discovered by e2 media network and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not e2 media network, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

If things had worked out differently, you might have found Kenny back in his hometown of Corpus Christi, dressed in a stiff suit and tie, maybe in an office with the sweet smell of leather chairs and a view of the bay. He might have been poring over legal documents, using God’s gifts of speech and debate to disrupt human trafficking as an attorney. For a long time, Kenny imagined his life looking something like that. He wanted to do something meaningful, something his dad could point to and be proud of.

But Kenny’s Heavenly Father had different plans.

The summer after Kenny’s freshman year of high school, God first revealed Himself to Kenny at a Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) sports camp, an organization he got involved with through his time playing baseball. Though he had attended church his entire life and heard the Gospel numerous times, the FCA camp was his first experience with the emotionally raw kind of worship that causes people to unashamedly raise their hands and voices. The Lord continued to stir Kenny’s heart and, after winning a debate tournament and learning of the realities of human trafficking, he was sure God was calling him to use his talents as an attorney.God's Plans are Always Better than Our Plans

The following school year, Kenny moved from his small, suburban high school to an urban city and found that the FCA that he had grown to love was virtually nonexistent in his new school. Kenny got involved in the FCA leadership and, with him speaking and his friend leading worship on Wednesday nights, their numbers grew from five to 50. Revival was happening in Kenny’s new high school. Each week as he took the stage to speak, he looked at the expectant faces in the crowded gym and proudly thought, I did this. 

When Kenny started applying to college, he looked for three things: a place where he could continue to play baseball, a school known for producing attorneys, and a campus where he would have opportunities to share the Gospel. He found all of those at Southwestern University. There, he surrounded himself with Believers and, continuing in his self-righteousness, he walled off anyone or anything associated with the party culture on campus. When his entire baseball team was rushing fraternities, he refrained, thinking, That’s where the sinners go.

Eventually, Kenny started playing keys with two seniors who were leading worship on campus. The seniors, however, would be graduating soon and wanted to discuss the future of the weekly worship service with Kenny. They told him that he would have to take over or the service would come to an end. They asked him to pray about quitting baseball in order to keep it alive, but Kenny was hesitant. He had played baseball his entire life, and the sport was one of the main reasons he had chosen to attend Southwestern. He agreed to pray about it, but his pleas to God were meager, half-hearted attempts. Nonetheless, God used those prayers to incite a heart change in Kenny, and he began to despise baseball for seemingly no reason at all. His excitement for leading worship grew and grew until Kenny decided to quit baseball in order to devote his time to leading the worship service.God's Plans are Always Better than Our Plans

The next summer, Kenny felt the conviction of the Spirit. For the first time, Kenny saw error in the way he was treating the people around him. He began to understand God’s capacity for grace and that it is extended to anyone, regardless of their sin. Kenny had built himself up for so long as the example of an ideal Christian that he had grown disconnected from the people that God seeks to know and love.

The following year, Kenny devoted himself to building relationships and genuinely getting to know the people around him. Having quit baseball, he led worship each week with full dedication. All the while, he was continuing to pursue law school with no ambition of going into ministry. In fact, in all the years of leading in high school and college, he never thought about being anything other than an attorney.

When it came time for him to take the LSAT during the summer before his senior year, Kenny felt a lot of uncertainty about pursuing law school. He began to question the ambitions he had kept for so long. However, he felt joy in his time leading worship and even thought, Why can’t I just do this?God's Plans are Always Better than Our Plans

The most convicting affirmation of Kenny’s call to ministry came on a Sunday when he overslept for the morning service at his home church in Georgetown and found himself at a Sunday evening service at The Austin Stone Community Church. As he listened to Matt Carter describe his own call to ministry, Kenny started thinking, Law school doesn’t make me feel that way, but leading worship does. The band started to lead a song that Kenny had heard and led countless times, but, in that moment, he felt newly convicted by the lyrics:

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander

Over the next few years, the Lord led Kenny on a journey of faith and he is now in his second year as a worship resident at The Stone. He looks back on his ministry in high school and college, at the times when he was harboring sinful pride and self-righteousness, and is amazed at how God used him even then, a broken kid, to spread the gospel to his classmates. And, though he always wanted to make his father proud by gaining status and recognition, he recognizes how his parents are overjoyed in seeing him proclaim the glory of God instead.God's Plans are Always Better than Our Plans

The Austin Stone Story Team is a community of artists who tell stories of gospel transformation. We are photographers, writers, editors, filmmakers, and musicians on a common mission to use our gifts for His glory.

(By The Austin Stone Story Team. Discovered by e2 media network and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not e2 media network, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc