A Word About Calling

Here I am. My name is my blog. And there is a picture of my face all smiling and sweet, looking like life is perfect and I have all the answers. Who am I?

Let me just get this off my chest, friends, because I have struggled, struggled, struggled through this. Why am I writing? Why do I think anyone would listen to me?

I don’t have to tell you dear reader, that I am nobody special. You already know that, because you have no idea who I am. 🙂 (Or you’re my mom.) But, I am just a woman like you. A mother like you. A sinner like you. One who struggles to put an outfit together and brush my teeth in the morning. One who gets frustrated when my kids can’t find their shoes. I yell at my kids more than I would like, harbor jealousy in the dark places of my heart, and cry over the exponential amount of cellulite I have accumulated over the past five years. I am just your average American stay at home mom.

So what do have to say? What can tell you that you do not already know? The reality is, probably nothing. And yet, here I sit, typing away on a computer like it’s my job: a job that no one is asking me to do.

And then it hit me one day as I read the parable of the talents in Matthew 25. Oddly enough, the word “talents” here is another term for money, but immediately we see the word and read the Webster’s definition: “a special natural ability or aptitude.” And when you read it like that, it gets a little more real. While we have been given money to be good stewards of, we have also been given talents, abilities, gifts.

Honestly, reading through the parable is a little scary. Three servants, two choose to invest wisely, and one gets kicked out. There’s a lot going on in this parable that I don’t have time to unpack here, but it shows more of the “judgement” side of God, one that we aren’t very comfortable with. He gives us things, and expects us to do something with it. It’s not just for safe keeping but investing. Investing in others for the glory of God and the expansion of His Kingdom.

Reading through this passage again I was struck by the fact that I have been given talents from God. We all have. Not one of us can say we haven’t been given anything. Maybe some of us have been given a lot, some of us a little. Either way, we’ve all been given to. And as I read and processed this, I saw myself a lot like the one servant nobody wants to be, the one who was scared to invest the gifts God had given him and buried a hole instead.

God wants me use my “talents” for Him, not cover them up because I am scared. And although no human being was asking me to write, He was. He has a job for me to do. Do I have the guts to take a risk and invest? Or would I bury a hole out of fear instead?

You see, I had been looking at it upside down or outside in. It isn’t about who I am or what I have to say or not say. It isn’t about me at all. It is about Jesus. It was always and only ever about Him. This is His world, His story, and I am His child using His money, His talents, His gifts.

God isn’t calling me to write because I am the world’s best writer or His gift to moms everywhere. He called me to write–so I am. And I figure He knows what He is doing, even if I don’t. I trust that He will be glorified in some way, big or small, by my obedience to Him.

Because I am 100% convinced that when we do what we love, we glorify Him. Even if it’s the beauty of one life lived to Him. One life lived for the glory of God may seem slightly insignificant to us, but to the God who performed individual miracles and radically changed lives one person at a time, there is no greater thing.

So I am not writing because I have all the answers, but because He does. And when He says, “jump!” I’m gonna jump.

Over the past two years I have been slowly learning that “calling” is really pretty simple. It looks a lot like obedience to God. It’s that’s simple and it’s that hard. It’s simple because it isn’t complicated. You just follow God’s lead. You say “yes, Lord” when He tells you the thing it is He wants you to do.

But it’s hard because sometimes He can ask us to do crazy things. Things that don’t make a lot of sense. Things have uncertainty written all over them. Things that are risky. When I say yes to God, I’m not really sure what I’m getting myself into. I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I have to trust that it is there.

Most times, obedience to God requires straight up blind faith. But I’m pretty certain there is no better place to be than standing in obedience to God.

It doesn’t mean that things will come easy, or even that what I thought would come to pass will. But I will no doubt get front row seats to something wonderful–something special: watching God work and seeing Him reap a harvest, whatever that looks like. That’s worth all the obedience in the world to me.

So the question I now ask is…what is God calling you to do? I bet you already know. Now here comes the hard part. Obey. Just do it. Just show up. Invest. Begin. Just say “yes, Lord, here I am, send me.” If we are daring enough to take him at His word, I think it will be the best thing we’ve ever done.

 

How Sweet the Sound

The other night I snuggled up with my son to read books before bed. He picked one of his favorites, a Bible story book with cool illustrations of Noah’s Ark and Jonah and the whale. He doesn’t quite have the attention span for the whole story, so I usually just flip the pages and say a few words about each one. We came to the resurrection story and I read the verse at the bottom of the page.

It was Isaiah 25:8: “And the LORD God will wipe away tears from all faces.”

And like someone turned on a faucet, tears started streaming down my face.

Now, I am a woman. And a woman prone to tears at that. I cry for many different reasons, in many different ways, but I’m not sure crying has ever caught me so off guard like it did that night.

Why would a statement about God wiping tears from our eyes make me cry?

Homesickness.

There is something about doing familiar things in an unfamiliar place that reminds you just how far away from home you really are.

We went and got our Christmas tree on Saturday. As we were driving to the nondescript parking lot, I realized that the leaves were still on the trees! Yellow, orange, maroon, gold–I have never picked out a Christmas tree with the fall colors in the background.

We set our tree up in the living room, but I didn’t even feel like decorating it. I didn’t want to listen to carols or deck the halls. It didn’t feel like Christmas was coming at all.

I thought the same about Thanksgiving. The palm trees were swaying outside the window as we sat down to our Thanksgiving meal. Not the usual backdrop for our turkey feast. I am used to seeing barren twisted tree branches curling up into clear blue skies through the window as we eat our green bean casserole.

Still, we had a nice meal. We lit a fire. We watched football. We had company. We even ate Indian Pudding, which we were told was a traditional New England desert for Thanksgiving. But I missed my family, and those barren tree limbs.

All these feelings I welled up in my heart, trying to deny their existence. Then I read a verse about Jesus wiping away our tears and it all came out. I was sad. I was homesick. But it was okay. He knew I was feeling down and one day He’s going to wipe all those tears away. What a beautiful thing for the LORD to say to His children. I am so glad the Bible includes verses like that one.

When things are going well in life, I say things like, “God is so good.” I know it’s true. I believe it. God is always good, in sickness and in health, in poverty and in wealth, God remains the same: good.

But I’ve been realizing lately, that the presence of so many good things in my life is not a result of God’s goodness. It is a result of God’s graciousness.

To say that I have these things because God is good in some way implies that He gives these things to me because I am also good. And so good people do good to other good people. But there is no way that I deserve all the wonderful the things I have been given. I am not that good.

I have these things because God is a gracious God, not because He is good.

There are so many wonderful attributes of God, but grace just may be my favorite. Undeserved merit. Kindness. Forgiveness. Grace.

It is enough to bring a grown man (and of course, a woman) to tears. It truly is amazing grace.

So what am I thankful for this Thanksgiving season? God’s overflowing, ever present, abundant, and humbling grace. Without which I would be lost and forever homesick, with no one to wipe away my tears.

Brooke Frick Newsletter

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