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Determining Our Calling and Vocation in Life

When I received the request from your Beacon Light Staff to write this article concerning, “How a Christian Determines His Calling and Vocation in Life,” I could envision our youth hoping that I could lay out a blue-print of concrete things which would enable each covenant youth to know exactly what vocation to enter. But this is impossible. Rather, it is my hope to turn to the Word of God for guidelines which the child of God may and must use to determine his calling in life.

To do this, let us turn our attention to Psalm 119:9, a passage of Scripture that answers the question which we consider. In this passage we have the following: “Where withal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.”

At the beginning we observe that the Psalmist teaches that the covenant youth are aware of the need to cleanse their way. The covenant youth, that is the true seed of election, desire to walk as strangers and pilgrims in this world. They desire to walk as brethren and sisters of Christ. However, this means that their way must needs be cleansed and kept clean. But how can the covenant youth accomplish this? By nature he is inclined to all evil. Further, at every turn in the way there is Satan, and the world appealing to his sinful flesh. And the natural inclination is to satisfy one’s natural desires.

But the Psalmist speaks of the youthful members of the Church of Christ. They are those whom Christ has quickened by His Spirit. They have been called by Christ’s Spirit and Word. Under the preach­ing of the gospel of Christ their faith has been activated and has grown to a level of spiritual maturity, whereby they lay hold of Christ and live out of Him. Principally their goals have become the goals of Christ, and His will is their guide. Thus, they are repentant ones desiring to walk as members of Christ’s body. Hence, the question, how shall a young man cleanse His way? It is the question of Faith! And it is this ques­tion of faith that prompts the covenant youth also to ask: “How does a Christian determine his calling and vocation in life?” “How does he know what is God’s purpose for him?”

The world or unregenerate youth have no need for these questions. They despise God’s way, they care not for His Kingdom. Hence, the criterion for the world with respect to vocations has no limitations. Money, name, self-glory and satisfaction of the flesh become their goals. When the world begins to select a vocation it asks, what occupation will enable one to make the most money, or provide advancement in society while at the same time will give one the most time for leisure and pleasure. Or such a one’s goal may be to find a job or labor where he can do as little as is possible and still exist. However, for the youth in Christ these considerations may not and ought not to govern them. For they are the considerations of Belial.

Rather, Christian young people desire the way that is right before God. This means the considerations of the covenant youth concerning a vocation is limited by his desire to walk as a stranger and a pilgrim in the midst of this world. So that for him the answer to this question of vocation and calling is found in the Psalmist an­swer: “By taking heed thereto according to thy word.” The covenant youth must be governed and led by the Word of God. Through that Word we are given the con­tent of a godly walk and life. The gospel of Christ must be our guide also in such a seemingly practical matter as one’s vocation. The question of necessity must come down to what will God have me do?

Understand God does not answer this question for you by writing the answer some night upon your bedroom ceiling. Nor must we make the false assumption that God gives us talent for only one oc­cupation in this world. God surely gives us talents or various gifts or abilities. And our calling is to use them as stewards in the Lord. Yet this may be accomplished in one of several occupations. Which is the right one becomes the question. Again, I would like to remark that the child of God must answer with the question, “What is God’s will?”

Understand, this means we must know the will of God! It is the will revealed to us in His Word. We, as covenant youth, must know the Word in order to know His will. Christ uses the preaching of the Word to reveal that wondrous will of God to you. It is a power which enables you to live out of Christ, so that His will be­comes yours. Under the preaching through the study of the Scriptures the child of God is led to his answer.

Prayerfully, the child of God must assess his talents. Some have talents for advanced study, some have talents for mechanical work, some have talents for salesmanship, etc. These he must assess, also enlisting others to help him, such as parents and teachers. And I would like to emphasize the aspect of prayer in this matter. One must honestly before God see his limitations, as well as, his abilities. Further, it is neces­sary to prayerfully consider the possible vocations in which he may labor. And in this prayerful consideration ask: What will God have me to do? Again sincerely and honestly this question must be asked, the Word must direct our way in this. For in­stance, Christ says we may not be un­equally yoked together with the world. This of course means some labor or occupations which require union membership are out. Scripture emphasizes our need to live under the true preaching of the Word, but some occupations would draw one away from it. Or one may for instance have the talent to drive truck, but to take up such a calling in transcontinental hauling would mean no family life, and this is not God’s will. Many other examples could be used, but let this suffice. The worship of God, His service, and the covenant family life dictate our decision. Honestly seeking God’s will through His Word in prayer is our calling. The covenant youth in whom the Word of God lives will enter a vocation and calling well-pleasing to Jehovah, by taking heed to his way according unto Gods Word, the child of God will enter a vocation which will serve his life as God’s friend-servant. Doing this, beloved youth, you shall be surely blessed.