Friday, February 10, 2017

Calling through the snow

This week I experienced my first major snowfall while living on the East Coast. Yesterday, I sat in my dorm under a blanket with a book in hand, gazing out the window at the view which had become obscured through the swirling snow. Today as I hiked up the snowy hill to class I could clearly see where my path was leading. Continuing to reflect on the subject of calling, I realized that it may be like these two pictures of snow (one below) in that the sense of calling, particularly in regards to clarity, is different for different people.

Earlier this week I was assigned to write out my sense of calling in under two-pages, double-spaced. I brought the assignment to class where before turning it in, the professor instructed the class to get into groups of three and share what we had wrote with one another. One person in my group had a very clear sense of calling, even a particular moment when he was called that he could reflect upon. The other person wasn't sure what exactly his calling is, though he is actively taking steps towards what he thinks it might involve. The variety of call stories continued to become more and more apparent as the class heard briefly from each group about similarities and differences that emerged. I felt myself growing emotional as I listened to the stories about what had brought this group, comprised of people from a variety of cultures and life stages, to invest in seminary as they look to be more effective in their ministries. It is such a joy to hear people speak about their calling who have a clear sense of it, yet it is also encouraging to listen to people describe their continuing journey of discovery in regards to their calling.

Are we willing to take steps towards our call even when the path isn't entirely clear? 

As I work on translating the beginning of the Gospel of John for another course, I am amazed at how quickly the disciples knew who they were following. While the disciples were quick to know who, they spend the rest of the book discovering more about who He is and what that means for their lives. Surely they didn't see the path of their calling fully in the moment when they started to walk with Him, but they did respond to the part of the call that they had received and followed Him.  

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