The Bible says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11). As Christians, we are followers of Christ, and we are all called to live according to God’s law; we are called to live a life of service to God and our fellow man. But sometimes in the midst of life and our own shortcomings, we fall off course with God. But nothing is more important than God’s calling for your life, especially your calling to follow Him. Knowing the signs He’s calling you and how to discern those messages are imperative in order to live the life God wants for us. The Word of God describes several kinds of calling, including a general call to everyone, an effectual call to His people, and a technical call to a particular vocation. Jesus may be trying to reach you to encourage you to get on (or back on) on spiritual course. Here are several key signs Jesus is calling you. It’s time to take up your cross and follow Him.
1. Experience of Emptiness.
Sometimes, we begin to feel a strong sense of emptiness, as if something important is missing from our lives. All Christians have feelings of spiritual emptiness from time to time. This is a sign that Jesus is calling you to follow Him, even though it may be hard to see it that way when we are caught up in our sin and loneliness. It is often sin that causes our feelings of spiritual emptiness – possibly the sin of apathy toward God or sluggishness in our daily lives. Also, how we feel physically can impact how we feel spiritually. Remember, Jesus is close to the brokenhearted. Reach out to God through prayer, and meditation and ask God what He’s asking of You. When you seek, He will reveal this to you.
2. Calling to Help Others.
This doesn’t even have to be a calling to the ministry. Sometimes this is a calling to do more for others because you simply feel led to. The Bible tells us, “Now you belong to Him…in order that you might be useful in service to God” (Romans 7:4). One of the greatest ways to displays God’s love and reflect Christ’s presence is through acts of kindness and giving back. Regardless of your job or career, you are called to full-time Christian service. If you feel an underlying urge to do something bigger than yourself, to benefit the greater good without any need of reward, you are being called to take up Your cross. Listen to Him. When you use your God-given abilities to help others, you are fulfilling your calling.
3. Shift in Career and Relationships.
Sometimes, Jesus calls us in ways we may never have imagined. Sometimes, Jesus is trying to get your attention by telling you that you have a greater calling. This may translate into a career shift. As Mark 10:45 reminds us “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve.” That means that we should live lives that reflect our service to others. If your current job doesn’t reflect this and you feel like something is missing or isn’t feeling right, Jesus is trying to get your attention. Our calling may not be revealed to us overnight, but through using our gifts and talents in our careers, many of us discover what feels right and develop a need to do more.
Our relationships can reveal Jesus’ calling for our lives. Be open to listening to what the people in your life have to say, especially the spiritual ones, particularly if you’ve fallen off course with God. These people will affirm you. They are placed in your life by God so that you can recognize your full potential and God might be sending an important message through them. On the other side, be mindful of people who take you off course with God. Anyone who causes a separation between you and God is not a good person to have in your space. Once we remove these people from our lives we are in a better place to see God’s calling for our lives.
Some Reading Recommendations:
40 Days With Jesus: Celebrating His Presence (Jesus Calling®)
by Thomas Nelson.
100 Days of Less Hustle, More Jesus: A Devotional Journal