Call to Ministry
Douglas R. Lupo
Isaiah 6:8; II Corinthians 1:15-23; Isaiah 30:18-23
Prelude to the Call.
I have been a Christian since August 4, 1978, and have heard The Great Commission (Matthew 28:18ff) preached many times. I was always content in rationalizing just to be a nice person, attending church, and only sharing my faith when asked.
While involved with The Navigators and Campus Crusade for Christ, I learned how to share my faith, but never had the burning desire to be used in fulfilling The Great Commission. During Fall 1986, my heart began to change.
The Voice of the Lord.
After hearing several messages, attending a missions conference, and seeing a special slide presentation, I began to inquire about serving the Lord in full-time ministry. The slide presentation was arranged with Twila Paris’ song entitled “Send Me,” quoting Isaiah 6:8- “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us.’ And I said, ‘Here am I, Send me!’”
Slow Down to Fast.
During the week of November 9, 1987, I started asking questions about getting an education towards ministry. I felt if the Lord was leading me into ministry, I should start preparing myself. More than anything, I desire to do the Lords’ will. So, I decided to take some time out of a busy schedule, slowing down to fast and pray for the Lord’s direction.
After four days of fasting and praying, the Lord led me to II Corinthians 1. There I learned how our conscience testifies how we conduct ourselves in the world (1:12) and how Paul fully intended to visit the Corinthians again, but the Lord prevented him (1:15-23). I asked, “Lord, what are You trying to tell me? How does this apply to my life? What are You saying about the plans I made for a career in the Air Force?” I paused to allow the Lord to speak and the thought of Isaiah 30 entered my mind. I don’t know why Isaiah 30, I had never read it before, but here is what it said:
“the Lord longs to be gracious to you (30:18) … how gracious He will be when you cry for help! As soon as He hears, He will answer you (30:19) … whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you saying this is the way; walk in it (30:20) … defile your idols overlaid with silver and your images covered with gold (30:22) … He will send you rain for the seed you sow and the food that comes from the ground will be rich and plentiful (30:23).”
A Wanted Man!
The Lord wants me involved in the harvest and has promised to guide and direct my paths (30:20). If I am obedient and trust Him, taking my eyes off idols overlaid with silver and gold– the finances and requirements, He will bless me (30:23).
One of my favorite songs is “What a mighty God we serve.” When I think of all the things He has done and the gifts He has given me, I can’t help wanting to serve Him. Since God has graciously shown me His will for my life, I must do it. The exciting thing now is waiting for the hand of the Lord. “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that He considered me faithful appointing me to His service” (I Timothy 1: 12, NIV).