The life of discipleship is all about answering the call. We first answer this call when we start our journey of faith. The life of any disciple begins when we first answer the call of Jesus, to come and follow him. As we live our life of discipleship, we answer the call time and time again.
I was baptized as a baby, but I answered the call to follow Jesus during confirmation. As a pastor, I also answered a different kind of call, a call to ministry. Answering this call meant going to seminary and going through the process of ordination in The United Methodist Church. Time and time again, as a pastor, I have answered many calls. Calls for help. Calls to come and be with a grieving family. Calls to come to the hospital at 1 a.m. Calls for clarity as someone wrestles with questions. Calls to come and pray over a newborn baby. Calls for just a conversation. Calls when friends are hearing their own call to ministry. Following Jesus, no matter if you are a pastor or a layperson is all about answering the call.
On Sunday, just as I was about to sit down for dinner with my family, I got another call. A member was about to have emergency open heart surgery. I was prepared for an easy night in with my family, but the life of ministry has prepared me to shift gears rather quickly. I ate quickly and then headed up to the hospital. I made it in time to pray with the member before they headed into surgery which is always a sacred time, and then I stayed with the family until we heard the word he was in recovery.
As I have answered so many calls in my life as a disciple and pastor, I have also been blessed to see so many others answer the call as well. As I sat in the waiting room with the family members, the room quickly filled with others who also answered the call and came to support. It is truly amazing to see times like this. When people drop whatever they had going on and they come. As a pastor, I do this all the time when called, but it is truly a blessing to be at a church that gets it. It is a blessing to see the church family at work, caring, supporting, and loving one another.
Those calls are always there. If you are not following Jesus, Jesus is calling. If you are looking for a church family, I have a great one that I can recommend. If you are hearing a deeper call, I would love to talk with you about that.
My friends. Jesus is calling. He is calling to you and to me. Are you ready to answer the call?