Have you ever thought about the concept of your calling in life?
I was asked to ponder that question recently. What exactly does “calling” mean? What is my calling in life? What does it look like?
Calling and vocation are not the same thing. Everyone has a different vocation, but everyone who follows Jesus has the exact same calling.
Our calling, as followers of Christ, is to simply do everything we do with the same kind of love and compassion as Jesus. Our calling is to be the hands and feet of Jesus. Our calling is to meet people where they are and love them in that place in the same way that Jesus loves us.
This means two things. First, we are called to sacrifice of ourselves. Jesus gave up His very life for us. Most of us are not going to be asked to make that kind of a sacrifice, but we are asked to serve others at times when it’s not convenient. (Hint: it’s almost never convenient.) Most of what it means to sacrificially love people involves service. It might involve helping them pay a bill they don’t have money for. It could also involve easier things like taking the time to have coffee with them. Basically, it’s being mentally and emotionally present, even if it’s hard.
Secondly, we are called to extend grace. We are called to embrace people we don’t agree with and people who are difficult to love. Jesus did this so beautifully when He chose to extend grace to each of us.
We are called to be like Jesus.
Several years ago, I read the New Testament with the intention of taking note of the things Jesus did, why He did them and the attitude He did them with. He did things like hanging out with people that no one liked. You know — the tax collectors (thieves), the prostitutes, the disabled, the people with contagious diseases, the people possessed by demons and the people that no one wanted. Jesus chose those people. The ones who needed Him the most. The ones most lost. He picked them and then he provided for their needs. He healed them. He delivered them. He set them free. He talked with them and helped them see a better way. And he did it all with humble love and compassion. That is what we are called to do.