Determining God's Call to Witness
Abstract: How does one determine God's will when considering a call to witness for God--locally or internationally? Müller said three questions were key: Was this God's work? Was this God's time? Are you the man or woman that God has chosen for this work at this time?
Prov. 3:5,6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He SHALL direct your paths.
I am frequently written regarding calls for mission service, and how one determines whether one is called or not. Here are some thoughts on the subject:
George Müller used to ask the three following questions:
1. Is this God's work?
2. Is this God's time?
3. Are you the man/woman chosen for this work?
Most of us respond when we know it is God's work, but we don't always ask the other two questions, figuring the "call is in the need." This often brings on great problems.
Many respond if the first two are right, giving little consideration to the last question. Yet, the last is critically important for several reasons.
First, have we been prepared, or is God committed to preparing us? If you look at the lives of people like Hudson Taylor and George Müller, you find they were both prepared for what they did through incremental preparatory steps.
Taylor surrendered his life to God in a very definite way shortly after his conversion, and while offering to go wherever God wanted, he heard a very definite "Then go for Me to China." As a result he began reading books on the subject, began living very frugally, began doing mission service where he lived, and prepared with schooling, so that he could work for God over in China. Later he learned that his parents had dedicated him for mission service to China at his birth.
From the time the clear call came, the conviction NEVER left him. Looking back at the variety of things that came together, he could easily say that not only was it God's work, but it was apparently God's time, and that he had been chosen. I am sure this gave him confidence when he was working during the frightening days of his early mission service when the bullets were flying into his rented dwelling.
Second we must consider the fact that someone else may have already been prepared for the service under consideration, and that our accepting it, would prevent them from honoring God's call. So there would be the double sin of not only accepting something we have not been chosen and prepared for, but also preventing someone else from responding.
I believe Müller was wise when he suggested these three questions, and we should find ways to ponder them.
When it comes to making major decisions, I have a friend who devotes a day to pondering these kinds of questions--actually decisions of less consequence as well, in her desire to only do God's will, and spends the day fasting and praying and pondering. She also asks others to pray for her. She always gets direction in that way.
The good part, is that when we are seriously seeking to hear and do God's will, He leads us correctly. In her case, one of her desires was to get through a private university without ANY debt--something vitally important when it comes to working for God in mission service. God helped her to do just that!!!! God is good!
Here is a link where you can read her testimony on seeking to know and do God's will: Fasting and Praying for Wisdom
Learn more about knowing God's will