WHAT IS A CHRISTIAN VOCATION?

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Christians often speak of getting a “vocation” or being called. They speak of receiving a summons to a certain job or position. However, there is a multitude of interpretations behind the definition, and most people are unlikely to be sure about its importance. What does vocation truly mean, and how does it apply to Christian life? 

When Christians inquire about a vocation, we generally imply, “Is God calling me to a specific job, career, or form of work? “It is a very interesting issue for the job we do is important to God. If work is important, it makes sense to ask what kind of work God wants us to do. 

In the Bible, God calls people — some people, at least — to a specific task, and gave everyone of them different instruction. We will explore in detail the textual sources of these “calls.” While scripture seldom uses the word “call” to explain God’s advice on careers, professions, or activities, these events in the Bible may correlate to what we generally mean by a vocational “call.” So, as a tentative response, we might say ” yes.” Because only God direct people to unique employment, professions, and works. 

But in the Bible, the idea of calling for the work of God is far deeper than all that we have said so far. The call to obey Christ lies at the center of all other calls. However, it is necessary not to confuse the call to obey Christ with the call to become a professional church worker. People in every way of life are called to obey Christ with similar scope and devotion. 

Types of God’s Calling

The call to connect to Christ and to believe in his redeeming effort in the world

Romans 1:6-6 – “Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ”

In the Bible, the term “call” is most frequently used to refer to God’s plan to lead sinners on the road to heaven and seeking a partaker for this redemptive service. This sense of calling is highly prevalent in Paul’s letters, whether or not the word “call” is specifically used. 

Romans 8:28 — And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. 

The call to belong to Christ is the main focus of this article. For this purpose, it is important to begin our study on the call to follow Jesus. It’s a call to a restored friendship with God. 

Understanding the call of God for our lives 

Our mission must shape an important part of our involvement in Christ. His work of creation is rooted in the act of imagination and development in the world (John 1:1-3). His regeneration mission will take place through fairness, restoration, love, goodness, modesty, and wisdom (Colossians 3:12). 

The work of Christ’s salvation is not limited to evangelism but includes everything possible to make the world what God has always wanted it to be. This task of redemption takes place in accordance with the work of life, development, and sustenance, which God has entrusted to humanity in the Garden of Eden. The Bible does not imply that the work of salvation has replaced the work of creation. 

The Basic Call for Work 

Before we can consider the likelihood of God’s direction for a specific kind of job, we must understand that God created us to work and He orders us to occupy till He comes. At the beginning of the Bible, God created series of works into the nature of humanity. He made human in His own image, alas this makes him also a hardworking God. For the sake maintaining the things He had created, He made man and instructed man to take charge of all He has created. 

Genesis 1:27-28; So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

Isa. 65:21-22. And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them. They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.

Based on these excerpts, we might conclude that everybody is “ordered” to work, as long as we understand that in this context, “ordered” means “required” and “ordained” to work. God has developed you as a worker, and He requires of you to work. It can be difficult to distinguish the specific job that God has ordained you for, but that does not change the fact that you are not in full capacity for the work he has ordained for you, alas, He is expecting you to be of full capacity when carrying out such task.

Calling to the existence – not just to work 

While we rely on the call of God to work – work is just one aspect of life. God also calls us to belong to Christ in every part of our lives.    

Colossians 3:17 — And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

Our job is not always the most critical part of our mission or service in Christ’s restoration. First of all, we must note that employment is not limited to a work with pay. The job that God brings us to can be unpaid labor, such as teaching children or caring for a sick family member or educating post-school students. And if we are called to paid work, God doesn’t assign many of us to a job that will preclude us from helping others.

If you have a paying career, the most important task that God is asking you to do might be beyond your career. Your job will satisfy the need for money — which in itself fulfills part of God’s mandate to a job — but it may not serve all the other reasons God has for the work. We’ve seen that caring for children and elderly or disabled persons is a kind of work, and many persons who do it still have another paying job. On the other hand, the so-called hobby may be the most important activity that God is taking you to. You might function in literature, drawing, singing, performing, astronomy, heading a youth group, volunteering in a historical society, preserving a nature reserve, or a thousand other jobs. If anything like this is your decision, you’re obviously going to engage in it in a more severe manner, but you can also make a living in some other area. There is a difference between work and fun. Therefore, any given action may be work — paid or unpaid — for one person and leisure for another. 

Second, we must be cautious of not allowing work to overtake other aspects of our life. And if God directs you to a specific job or occupation, you need to put limits to such role to make room for the other elements of the call or direction of God in your life. Job does not crowd out the relaxation, rest, and prayer. There is no recipe for combining work with other aspects of life. But be careful not to let the feeling of calling you to work blind you to God’s calling. 

God has called Noah to build the ark. God called Moses and Aaron to their job (Exodus 3:4, 28:1). He called the Samuel (1 Samuel 3:10), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 1:4-5), Amos (Amos 7:15), and others. He called Abram and Sarah and a few others on a sojourn (which could be considered a kind of job call). 

The term “order” is not often used, but in these situations, God’s unmistakable guidance for a specific person to do a particular job is apparent. 

Aside from these cases, very few individuals in the Bible have received a specific call from God for a specific kind of job. Suppose God calls you explicitly and unmistakably to a specific job – In that case, you don’t need advice from anyone than to do whatever He calls you to do. 

Therefore, we will not further examine overt, unmistakable, personal calling, but instead, concentrate on whether God directs or leads people by less drastic means to various work styles. 

Vocation is the will of God for you. 

The word ‘vocation’ comes from the Latin word, which means ‘calling.’ For the Christian, a vocation is not only something that God is calling us to do, it is also the person that God is calling us to be. When He called His first disciples to the Lake of Galilee, it wasn’t to support Him in His mission; it was that his compassion and affection could change their lives. We have been called to worship Jesus, the Son of God, the divine Word of the Lord, who came as one of us to save and give us everlasting life. He has sent his Holy Spirit so that we can participate in his sacred presence and communicate that presence by striving to please him and love our neighbor. The Christian vocation is a call to be part of the Trinity.

Ephesians 4:4 — There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling

Vocation is a call to holiness. 

1 Thessalonians 2:12 — That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory

A way of interpreting this is to say that the basic human vocation is a call to holiness – a desire to be holy. The saints are diligent Christians who have tried to practice their faith without holding back anything – to love God with all their heart, love those around them without thinking of the cost, serve with devotion and intent. They are patriarchs who have compassion for the things of God. 

Every one of us is called to be saints. This is not an order but a vow made by God: he assures us, by offering us his Holy Spirit, that He might assist us to find our true happiness in loving him, and he will give us everything we need for the Christian journey. 

Have you already gotten a vocation?

The vocation to holiness and spirituality is already a part of you from the day you got baptized. Whatever the situation you are in today (even if it is unsatisfactory), you need to term such position as a vocation. Whatever the case, you should believe that God is with you and He requires of you to be holy in all affairs of life.. 

Vocation as a call to a particular ‘state of life.’ 

In previous centuries, the term ‘vocation’ may have been used mainly to characterize the lives of priests and religious – and, in a certain context, these selected individuals were called from their daily activity to the work of God. But nowadays, the term ‘vocation’ is rightly used even for marriage, a perpetual diaconate, a consecrated life, and other types of a single life. However, each of these is a wholehearted dedication that we make in response to the Lord’s invitation. 

Lifetime dedication is the position in which we carry out our profound vocation to holiness. God calls everyone to be saints but he only choses the few.

Matthew 22:14 — For many are called, but few are chosen.

Vocation as a request to be the special human that you are made to be. 

There is also another degree of ‘vocation.’ Every saint is special, and you are called to be holy not only in a general way but in the specific way that God has made you be. God has created you as a special person, and He calls you by a name that no one else has been given. 

Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. – John 15:16

You represent the love of Christ and reveal anything in his face in a way that no-one else can do. This is your ‘internal’ vocation, the call to be the person you are supposed to be. The more you tend to explore who you are, and the more you explore what is in you, the more you will be able to distinguish what God’s will is for you and what path He needs you to go in life. Your lifetime vocation and the specific road of holiness that you are called to follow will eventually evolve out of the person that God has made you to be.

Jeremiah 29:11 — For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

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