Is serving God an option or obligation?
Do we need the dramatic, mystical, and awesome meeting with God to assure us of our calling to serve God?
We focus on Isaiah 6:1-8, as our model of God’s commissioning His chosen messenger.
Probably, we grew up hearing when we were kids in Sunday school and reading when we were grown and matured, similar Bible stories and settled with the idea, that those who serve God have to experience what prophets, like Isaiah, had experienced.
You have probably heard some Christians giving the familiar excuse not to serve God because “I didn’t hear God’s call”.
Can we not see Isaiah’s commissioning on the perspective of Isaiah, who was at the temple, praying, worshipping, and most of all, expressing his want to serve God? And that, the vision that came to him was affirmation of his expression of wanting being God’s messenger?
It is my conviction that our wanting to serve God is not based solely on a dramatic, mystical, and supernatural meeting similar to Isaiah’s vision. Without such “special” event makes us easily opt out from serving God.
I have noted that lots of us Christians would choose to make selective service and would easily reserve those “bigger” tasks to people who have special calling.
What would make us want to serve God today? Let me cite two things why we must want to serve God.
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, in as far as Isaiah is concerned; he was able to do his wish to serve God.
His aspiration to serve God led to his commissioning and he successfully discharged of his mission as the one whom God has sent to prophesy to His people.
The crucial question and challenge for us today is “What would make us want to serve God today?”
The Urgent Need to Serve
Perhaps you would agree with me that we are in a worse situation than during the time of Isaiah. Do you know why?
In Isaiah’s time there was no Internet or digital media that remnants of “sons and daughters of Sodom and Gomorrah” use today to promote immorality and greed.
At least, in Isaiah’s time the world view is just within the areas of Judah and Jerusalem and neighbouring countries. There were no weapons of mass destruction to lives and properties.
Sad to say, the progress of modern technology and the progress of scientific knowledge, which allowed man to live in comfort and prosperity, have made him turn away from God.
In the time of Isaiah, at least the enemies of Israel acknowledge that the God of Israel is strong and mighty. Today, the enemies of God-believers proclaim the non-existence of the Great Almighty God.
If our present generation is worse than Isaiah’s time, then as people of God, are we not supposed to commit to serve God with more intensity today?
The church is given to commit for the keeping of faith. The invitation and calling of God has been given through the Lord Jesus Christ, his life, death, resurrection, and coming again.
This is the Good News that we must PRESERVE and SERVE to our fellowmen.
Partakers of the Body of Christ
What would make us want to serve God is the living fact that we are partakers of the body of Christ.
If you say that you won’t serve God because you are not called and there’s no special event to attest that, then you are wrong.
Let us be reminded that every month we partake of the Lord Supper.
God, revealed in Jesus Christ, whose life we celebrate in the Lord Supper, is our dramatic, mystical, and supernatural encounter with God.
The invitation has always been given and offered to us in the bread and the cup.
I believe that when we receive the bread and the cup we summon ourselves to take part in the life of the body of Christ, which is the living church.
When we partake of the bread and cup of the Lord Jesus Christ, the voice of God has always been there asking, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us? ”
When we partake of the bread and cup of the Lord Jesus Christ, we commit our lives in responding, “Here am I. Send me!” until the Lord Jesus Christ comes.
May these two things, the urgent need to serve and our partaking in the body of Christ, make us thirst to serve God while we are able and available.
This blog post has excerpts of the sermon I delivered at Glenfield Baptist Church. My gratitude and appreciation to Pastor Colin Hopkins, Pastor Andrew Monk and Glenfield Baptist Church for giving me the opportunity to share God’s message on 10 June 2012.
PHOTO CREDIT: Glenfield Baptist Church Good Friday Program Cover