Three months ago, we announced at CCR that my family sensed God was calling us to return the USA to mature ROC (Rwanda Outreach Community) Partners as a missionary sending organization. We spent several weeks deeply wrestling with the sense of call. (To read about the wrestling see http://jenkinsinrwanda.blogspot.com/2011/10/called-to-return.html.)
In five months we will transition to the USA for a season. Throughout the Old and New Testament there is a familiar pattern to a call. First, a community is in crisis. Second, God speaks to an individual who has long been prepared to be part of the answer. Third, the individual objects to the call. He would rather God ask someone else. In fact, the individual is sure God can find someone better prepared. Calls are never easy. Then God reassures the individual. Finally, the called obeys. Then the journey begins.
Rwanda is a country in a hurry. Our basic institutions are young. We need so many more businesses, schools, churches, and institutions beyond measure. Many of us describe our lives compared to our peers with words like, “I just got lucky.” We can’t explain our good fortune of education, professional skill, relationship networks, and opportunity with just coincidence. We wake in the mornings aware of just how much work is needed. We are “called.”
Most contemporary Kilokole teaching on “calling” misses the basic biblical process of calls. Kilokole can be far too focused on individual ambition, talent, and opportunity. Biblical calls ask an individual to hear God through the needs of one’s community, see the tasks are far bigger than our individual ability, and step forward trusting God.
For the next three months at CCR we’ll go on a journey looking at stories of God’s call. I hope you can join us as we begin OUR CALL series this Sunday at CCR.