Waiting For Job Charming

Finding Your Calling Sermon Illustration

There’s a danger in trying to make a calling—and the exercise of the gifts associated with it—something more exciting, or just sensationalizing it. But Bethany Jenkins says we miss the point when we do this: “Too often we overspiritualize ‘calling’ and make it about self-expression instead of faithfulness to God and service to others. We search for the perfect job—just what we’re ‘called’ to do—and use ‘calling’ as a trump card to replace perseverance, risk, and qualification. Yet there is no Job Charming. Most of us could do any number of things. We simply must make a vocational choice (using the classic disciplines of prayer, community, and Scripture reading), work deeply at it, and be faithful in it. As Paul summarizes, ‘Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men’ (Col. 3:23). Let’s not, then, overanalyze or overspiritualize ‘calling’ in our lives. Our primary calling is to know Jesus Christ. That’s his resounding voice in his Word. Yes, in addition to his Word, he has given us gifts and talents—as well as prayer and community—and called us to different stations. But there’s no perfect job and, even if we love our work, we often only experience that in retrospect after years of deep labor, working heartily as unto the Lord” (Bethany Jenkins, “Stop Overspiritualizing ‘Calling,’” The Gospel Coalition, July 3, 2017, https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/stop-overspiritualizing-calling/).