July 15, 2015 6pm Pacific Time
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The words, “The Call,” have great meaning. Granted, it is the time for Donna and I to connect with you on the 15th of every month at 6pm pacific time, but there is much more to those words than that.
When I was born, my parents thought long and hard about what they would “Call” their son if they had a boy. By the time I was born, they knew that I would be named after my Father and my Grandfather. The first name would be Robert after my father and my second name would be Anthony after my grandfather. How and why they chose those names no one, not even themselves, really knew. We can talk about the heritage or the legacy but there is something more, something divine. God creates a desire and an understanding in the hearts of a parent and the name is cast. It is called out. We are all named and called something with some meaning and we usually carry that to our grave. Since Jesus was the Son of God, God himself told Mary and Joseph what he would be called. “You shall call his name Jesus, for it is he who shall save his people from their sins” Matthew 1:21 Jesus did as he was called and continues to save his people from their sins. God was, is and always will be true to His word.
As a young boy I received a “The Call” from God to go into full-time Christian ministry. There weren’t any lighting bolts. There weren’t any vocal words heard from heaven. There wasn’t even a clear time that I can say, “That was the time when…” But, I was “Called!” It is something that I have always known. It is something that was as clear to me as my US citizenship or my family heritage as a Schuller. With that clear vision, I marched forward from High School to College and into Seminary knowing that that was my “Call.” It wasn’t easy for me. I had plenty of challenges but because of my “Calling,” I know that God would carry me through and he did. I couldn’t read when I graduated from High School but I didn’t let that stop me from going to College. I couldn’t say two words in public without tremendous fear but I didn’t let that stop me from going to Seminary. It was “The Call” that gave me the faith to keep going in spite of tremendous odds against me. “For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11. God was, is and always will be true to His word.
As a newly ordained pastor in the Reformed Church in America, I received a “Call” to a church as the pastor of Evangelism. That was a formal process that was voted on by the church board and approved by the higher judicatory of the denomination. It was a contract between me and the church. They were “Calling” me to perform a spiritual function that they needed. In spite of the formality it was a spiritual process surrounded with prayer. The congregation, her board and staff all prayed about what they were doing. Would they be able to fulfill the obligation? Would God supply the needs to add another staff person? Was I the right person for the job? Was “the Call” going to fit like an old shoe or 2 sizes too small or too big? On my side I was praying with my family to be sure that it was the best thing for us. It had to be a win/win and only God knew if that was the case so prayer became the foundation for a successful outcome. “All things work together for good… to those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28. God was, is and always will be true to His word.
As the Minister of Evangelism I became the one Calling out. “Go tell it on the mountains over the hills and everywhere. Go tell it on the mountains that Jesus Christ is Born.” For nearly 40 years I have shouted it from the rooftops. I have bellowed it in the streets. I have broadcasted it to the world. I have been and will be a “Fisher of Men.” I called Gods people to listen to His Call and come to Jesus, get baptized and receive their “Calling.”
I will continue to do this until God “Calls” me to come home and leave this world and go to the next. I suspect that won’t be for a while yet but I am ready if he were to call today.
“The Calling” is what life is all about. It is that “One Thing” from the Billy Crystal movie. When you are called life has meaning, purpose and adventure. Without it we are ships without a rudder or wanderers in the desert. The Call never goes away. You can try to hide from it. You can deny it you can pretend it never happened. But as Romans 11:29 says, “for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” With your “Calling” you can “be confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 God was, is and always will be true to His word.
God is blessing you. Robert A. Schuller, June 13, 2015
To contact me via email: Robert@SchullerMinistries.org