God Calling

This last Sunday I was at my parents church, Madras Free Methodist Church. Pastor Rick talked about following God’s calling for your life, and getting ankle deep, then knee deep, the waist deep and so on until you’re in over your head. That got me thinking about my own life and the callings I’ve been following. What I wonder is how do you know it’s God calling? How do you know that the still small voice you’re hearing is God and not your own selfish desires? How can you tell the difference unless God makes a big spectacle of it?

I’ve heard a few people tell their stories of God calling them. Usually it’s not a big spectacle, they are just certain that they hear God calling them to this, that or the other thing. I’m not saying they didn’t hear it, it’s just something I’ve never understood and I’ll tell you why. I haven’t told this to a soul, so why don’t I just spill my spiritual guts here on the Internet. I can’t recall any time when I was absolutely certain that whatever I was choosing to do with my life was God calling me.

I have been a Christian my entire life. When I say “Christian” I mean that I believe in God, that Jesus was his son and died for my sins and I go to church. Once I got old enough I had questions and doubts, but I never lost my faith. I did rebel in High School and made a few poor choices, but I believe that was based on my lack of confidence in who I was.

The closest I ever came to loosing my faith and walking away from God was when Jordan died. Here I was following all the “rules,” and yet my husband was taken from me. I was left with a six month old son to raise on my own. Although I believe myself to be a strong person I quickly realized that I wasn’t going to survive on my own. I needed God, no matter how angry I was, I needed my faith.

To be clear, I haven’t been floating around aimlessly, doing nothing. I have had “feelings.” I knew from a young age I wanted to be a writer. I knew I was going to marry Jordan by our second real date. I knew I wanted to be the mother of his children. So I thought I was following God’s calling on my life even though I was never really sure I heard him say “be a writer, be a wife, be a mom.”

The thing is I also “knew” I wouldn’t be a widow at 29. I “knew” that Jack would have at least one more sibling (or three according to Jordan) and that those children would have an amazing, Godly man for a father.

So how could I have been so wrong about everything? Did I get the “calling” wrong, was I not listening in the least? Did I just do whatever I wanted and still have yet to find my calling? And if it was my calling to be a single widowed mom…what the hell kind of deal is that? How do you know it’s God calling you and not your own selfish plans or desires?

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4 responses to “God Calling

  1. I’m sorry, Staci… this blows. I don’t feel right giving you advice that would lead you away from your faith, but you know where I’m at. So here’s what I’ll say: follow your passions, follow your joy – there’s nothing wrong with that. If God smacks you upside the head with something obvious, well, he always has that opportunity to jump in and chit chat. For now, maybe just assume following your happiness is the compass he gave you? Desires do not equal “selfish plans” unless you’re hurting others. The things you wanted were good things, and there’s nothing wrong with those desires coming from an internal source – on the contrary, it just means you’re awesome.

  2. I don’t think one excludes the other. Just because something horrible and painful happened, doesn’t mean it wasn’t the a real calling, ya know? I have never heard of God promising a perfect and fair or even happy life if we just follow His callings. On the contrary, isn’t it supposed to be hard? Not that that explains or justified what has happened in any way, but I don’t think Jordan’s death discounts all the blessings and love you guys enjoyed together or makes that part of God’s plan less important. I don’t know. Just thinking outloud. I think its less about The Calling and more just good news you guys are talking. xoxo

  3. I am so sorry for your loss. I also had to face something that shook my faith last year. My oldest son’s father died in September. It was unexpected and although we had been separated, I felt like it was a knife through my chest. We were together for 6 years; my entire adult life. Having to go through ANOTHER death when I have seen so many too close to me for being so young. Not to mention having to explain to my 5 year old that his dad had died.
    I did think, why is God doing this to me. I don’t think God gives us painful experiences to shake us or break us down, even though it can feel that way. For some reason, it seems like after pain, my faith is strengthened. My ME is strengthened too. I guess that is a choice we can make, to let ourselves be strengthened. That doesn’t mean some nights I don’t still feel angry or that it isn’t fair.
    Know that how you saw your life ( three children, a strong wonderful husband), those things can still be. Sometimes we don’t know how right we actually were about how our lives would be until later years. Know that the voice in your head IS God. Just because he doesn’t come with angels singing gospel or a glowing light doesn’t mean that he doesn’t hear you or speak to you. YOU are the angels singing, YOU are the glowing light. AS long as you are listening you will hear him. I think if you are worrying about whether or not it is authentically Him you might miss it.
    How your late husband has blessed you! With a beautiful boy, and all you have shared. I am so sorry for the pain you have felt. If you are anything like the Staci I grew up with, you are tough and I’m sure an amazing mom.
    Maybe you do have yet to find your calling. But just don’t forget it is the journey along the way that matters.

  4. I believe marrying Jordan, even though that season of your life was way too short, was your calling. From the beginning of time, God knew the number of Jordan’s days and He orchestrated the last six years of his life to be one of complete happiness, wild adventures, and true love, all because of you! Thank you for your unconditional love for Jordan, your son, and your second family. We love you Stater.

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