We pastors love to talk about how we should all follow where God leads us. I talk about it a lot, too. And in theory, it’s something we all want to do. But there’s a problem with following where God leads us, which is this: sometimes God wants to lead us to places that we don’t want to go. Sometimes God wants to lead us to do things we don’t want to do. And we know that. And that’s what makes it hard to really commit to following God.
I’m not talking about going to be a missionary in Africa or something like that. I do believe God calls people do things like that, but I also believe that, most of the time, when God does that, God puts something in those people’s hearts that makes them want to do it. It may not have been something they wanted to do initially, but the idea took root and grew in them until it became something they not only wanted to do but something they felt they had to do.
What I’m talking about is the more mundane, ordinary things that you and I can be called to do. Things like going to visit a friend when we’d really just as soon stay home. Things like making a phone call to someone who you really might not even like very much, but who you know is going through a tough time and needs to know that someone cares. Things like listening to someone’s litany of complaints about their health, about the situation, about life in general, when not only have you heard those complaints numerous times before but you have plenty of things to complain about yourself.
There are times when you and I are called to do those things, as well as numerous other, similar things that we really don’t want to do. It can be in those little things that we find out whether we’re truly committed to following God. It can be in those little things that we truly show our love for God.
So, think of something like that in your life. I think we probably all have them. What is it for you? What are those things that you know you should do, but that you really don’t want to do? Once you’ve thought of them, ask yourself this: is it possible that these are things God is calling me to do? Are these things that I need to do, even though I may not want to, if I’m really going to commit myself to following God?
I don’t know. But I do know that a lot of our Christian faith is seen, not in the big, huge things that everybody sees, but in the small, seemingly minor things that very few people, if any, see. The small, mundane, ordinary things are often where we truly show whether we’ve truly committed ourselves to following God.
So, I hope you’ll think about this and pray about this in the coming week. Think about the small, ordinary things in your life that you know you should do, but that you really don’t want to do. Pray about whether those are, in fact, things God is calling you to do. If they are, and if we do them, we can take a significant step toward committing our lives to following God.