Over a lunch of biscuits, gravy, and hashbrowns on Sunday, my pastor asked me if I had ever considered becoming a deacon or priest in the Anglican church. Why, yes I have.
Everyone in my Army unit thinks I should become a chaplain. Apparently, I have the demeanor of a godly soldier. Moreover, I have wanted to do more in the church and use my abilities and time to contribute in a meaningful way. Making that official sounds like a good thing.
However, by most definitions, I have not been called.
I do not hear God that often. I believe that I have, but on a daily, even yearly basis, I do not hear a voice that I know to be God telling me to do something. As a good friend pointed out to me once, when God told people to do something in the Bible, they did not have a problem identifying the author of the voice (though some of them had problems obeying). Often when I pray, I do not hear anything with the clarity that Ananias heard the command to go and lay hands on Saul (Acts 9); when I pray, my thoughts stray onto a video game, or something going on in my life, and I often feel stray emotions that do not seem to be a divine message.
Christian life, from my perspective, can be a little frustrating in this regard. I do what I feel to be right, but I often do it without any miraculous divine assurance that this is correct. My view is that God will orchestrate my life and world in order to lead me to the right place. He will implant desires and thoughts in me without my knowledge, so that my desire to serve in the church is my call.
Of course, this becomes especially difficult when my desires are clearly not what God wants. Sifting through the muddle in my head can be very frustrating. Have I been called to be a deacon or a priest? I have already told my pastor that I want to become a deacon, and I am forced to hope and pray (because it is important, even if I do not hear an answer) that this is the right decision. Have I heard a call?