Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Call

"Michael and Gabriel were puzzled.

'Why doesn't He let us do it?' Michael asked.

They were sitting in a quiet corner of Heaven, chatting together as they watched what was happening on the small but beautiful blue and green planet called Earth.

'I know, we could do a far better job.' Gabriel sighed. 'Those human creatures He depends on so much are really quite useless. I know He loves them but they're so disobedient. Just take, for example, that little place in Africa - Burkina Faso. I don't know how many times He spoke in someone's ear about it and none of them took any notice. They sometimes seem to be too afraid to do His will. We, on the other hand, are too afraid not to do His will and we would have started to obey even while He was still speaking!'

'And it would have been such a privilege. You know, I think He made a mistake when He gave them choice and free will. If I had been creating creatures to serve me, I would have made them obey me!'

'It would certainly have got the job done more efficiently. But you know,' Gabriel went on, and his voice took on a rather wistful quality, 'I think I can understand why He did it. Have you ever seen His smile when one of those stubborn creatures does obey Him, out of love and with no compulsion?'

Michael nodded slowly, 'Yes, I've been in the Presence when that happens - it lights up Heaven. But it's just so frustrating watching them make such a mess of it all, knowing that we could do better. Even the obedient ones - they're so slow and weak and they're not very well equipped for the task. They can't fly in an instant from one place to another. It takes them ages getting anywhere in those little steel structures.'

'And it takes them even longer learning a new language,' Gabriel added. 'At least people hear us in their own language when we speak to them. All this language learning adds years on to the job. It can be hard watching them struggle with it - funny, sometimes too!'

'Of course, to be fair, we must remember that some of them have the right idea - it just takes so long.'

Gabriel smiled, 'I know what you mean. Men like Stanley and Jeremy have the vision, they can see what needs to be done..........'

'Stanley and Jeremy........ we got all excited up here about their plans. Now if only He had let us carry out those plans. You know that map of villages that Jeremy wants to evangelise? You and I could have taken a legion or two of angels and appeared to everyone in those villages to tell them the Good News. It would have been so easy, too - job done in a couple of hours.'

'The only problem with that,' Gabriel reminded Michael, 'is that we frighten those human creatures so easily. They're just not used to shining presences from Heaven speaking to them.'

Michael laughed, 'Yes, we are rather impressive, aren't we?'

Gabriel turned to him with a serious expression,
'You know I'm not sure we'll ever really understand His reasons for spreading the Gospel this way. You and I and the legions of mighty angels may be impressive and much more beautiful than the human creatures He created, but He seems to have a very special place in His heart for them. Maybe we could do a better job and do it more quickly and efficiently but He has chosen to do it through them. Somehow, seeing them serve Him, however ineffectively, brings more pleasure to Him than we ever could in an eternity of faultless service.'

'He loves them with such passion, doesn't He? It must be wonderful to be loved by Him like that......' Michael gazed down at the little planet, turning in space on its axis, and looked as though he wished that he could be one of those human creatures so beloved by Heaven's King.

'Do you think they know?' Gabriel wondered. 'Do you think they have any idea of the depth of His love?'

'They would if they could hear Him singing,' Michael smiled. 'What an amazing sound that is - when the God of Heaven rejoices over His children with singing. The hosts of heavenly choristers might sing well but even they listen with awe when the King sings...'"
-Epilogue "Angel Talk" from the book "A Place Prepared" by Gloria Kearney

I understand that this is not a true conversation between the angels in Heaven. However, I was encouraged... overwhelmed... by the message of this story. You will understand more about Stanley and Jeremy and Burkina Faso and the vision that the Lord placed on those two men's hearts if you read the book in its entirety. However, this epilogue is enough to bring across a very clear point: God loves you.

God wants to use you for His Kingdom service.

If we knew how much God loves us... if we would truly listen to His voice.... if we would obey Him because we love Him so much and we understood the honor of the task at hand... our world would be a different place. And not just OUR world - what we know and see and feel - but the whole world.

"For the Lord your God is living among you.
He is a mighty savior.
He will take delight in you with gladness.
With His love, He will calm all your fears.
He will rejoice over you with joyful songs."
-Zephaniah 3:17

Do we really understand that? Do we really KNOW that... in our hearts? The King of Heaven delights in us with gladness... He will calm all our fears... He REJOICES over us with joyful songs!

"'While you were doing all these things,' declares the LORD, 'I spoke to you again and again, but you did not listen; I called you, but you did not answer.'"
-Jeremiah 7:13

Let that not be us, as His followers... as His beloved Bride. No matter where we are in life, "let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith." (Hebrews 12:1-2)

What is He asking of you? What is He calling out to you? You do not want to miss this. We cannot afford to miss this. He is yearning for us to come into a love relationship with Him, to obey Him with everything that we have, to live our lives in total and complete surrender to Him...

Let us not be the ones who do not listen when He speaks to us. Let us not be the ones who do not answer when He calls us. Let us answer the Call...

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