Growing up in Japan: Growing up as a missionary kid in Japan, the missionary call has always seemed a normal part of life. I remember our family passing out thousands of tracts, hosting Bible studies, having church in our living room, and my mom teaching Sunday School. Along with pastoring, my dad spent years translating books into Japanese. (In the picture below, we're holding books that just arrived from the publisher.) Living in a large city in Southern Japan, I was surrounded by people without eternal hope. That knowledge left a deep impression. In fact, when I got older, I was worried that God wouldn't call me to missions. Here are a few things that I've learned about God's timing, call, and plan! God has a unique timing and fit for each person that builds like stair steps throughout his/her life.
Growing into a passion
As a Christian, God has made each of us unique. He has equipped us with internal talents and he is growing our perspectives and gifts through unique life experiences and education. Each of us has a special place in the extension of God's kingdom. Each Christian has the responsibility to seek God's daily and long-term plan for his/her life. As we do this, God grows a passion inside of us for tasks and people.
Unique Calling on Each Life
The unique calling that God has for each of us is sometimes not exactly what we envision ourselves doing. Also, we naturally have lots of growth that is needed spiritually and in our giftings. Over time, God brings us through experiences and ah-ha moments that shed light on our calling and prepare us for the next step.
Giving My Best in Every Season
The most difficult thing to live out is contentment and diligence in each season of life. Each season builds on the previous one, so we can't just jump to the next stage. Sometimes, I look at a season as a boot camp for my talents. Other times, I see it as a college class on spiritual growth. The good news is that most of the time, I'm not paying for those classes, albeit I'm having to sweat and study really hard!
Judging Each Other's Calling
This one is probably only difficult for me, but I'll throw it in anyway! As we go to the next stage, we become increasingly passionate about what God is showing us and growing inside of us. The beauty is that God is growing a unique passion that matches the people and activities that He's calling us to. This can lead to frustration as to why others aren't following the same calling. I'm learning that God wants me to take a posture of encouragement!
Prayer, Bible and Church
Daily life in a relationship with the Holy Spirit is key to growing into the next phase of your calling. It is in the community of believers that we can find support, truth, and opportunities to serve. Find some other believers who have a similar calling to yours. Learn from them. Quiet service seems to develop an awareness of God's voice. It's in humility that God tends to communicate.
Seek the Calling
Serving Christ in the now and into the next step is a combination of quiet contentment and desire to serve more. It is a balance that is lived out daily. Remember, each new learning about wisdom, God, and how to serve is necessary for the next assignment from your King. And, we want to stay in our calling. There's a balance here to be found. Speaking of balance, here's a video of me that has some spiritual value, although I'll leave that to you to figure out.
We're a family on mission to bring the good news of Jesus to the Philippines.