Receptivity & Response

The Lord called to Samuel, who answered, “Here I am.”
Samuel ran to Eli and said, “Here I am. You called me.”
“I did not call you,” Eli said. “Go back to sleep.”
– 1 Samuel 3:4-5

… Today’s readings are beautiful.

A big part of our spiritual journey is to discern God’s Will in our lives — What did He create us for? Why did He equip me with these certain sets of skills? Why am I in the situation that I am in? Why did the Lord place me in this certain position? What am I supposed to do? … and what I found funny and what I can relate to in today’s first reading was that Samuel was wrong 3 times when he heard God calling Him.

A quick flashback, shall we? I am a person who is programmed to move and change constantly. My life experiences and background show you a list of living in 17-18 different houses/apartments/flats/condominiums … whatever you call them, and roughly, excuse my poor memory, I’ve studied in around 13 different schools. My resume tells you that I have jumped from job to job constantly without any of those jobs lasting even 1 year, and my love life tells you … Ooops! No, no. Let’s not go there. But, yes. You get the gist. I am programmed for constant change and immediate change… I take risks. I like to live life with a somewhat unconventional way of thinking (hence I read books like: “Whatever You Think, Think The Opposite”), and often don’t care about what other people might say about me. It has gotten me to where I am so far.

In these past two years however, because I am strongly being rooted into Christ, I am starting to question: Was it really my mindset that got me to where I am? And did I create this destiny with the work of my own hands? I read a title of a book in finance one day that struck me: “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There.” And I revisited my past experiences and decided that I had to go through a period of unlearning. For me to push forward and grow as a creative person not only in profession but as an individual, I must drop certain learnings to acquire new ones, because the one deep truth I know is that I am not here because I willed it. I am here because God willed it.

Back to the point: I was questioning my status at work, having been promoted, but not wanting it or the responsibility that comes with it, I had doubts. I asked questions. There was very strong resistance. I wanted to leave, not get promoted to manage or stay to build business. I wanted to get my hands dirty again and explore new things. I wanted to be creative, to ‘create’ (as how artists would regularly put it), not lead / teach what I know. “Really Helen, what substance do you have to teach?” I kept asking myself. I questioned whether this resistance was coming from me, or did God plant the seed of my wanting to leave because He had other plans. I was deeply troubled. I sought out God in silence, many times. One great advantage of living 2 hours away from work is that I have a window of 4 hours of quiet time everyday to read the Word of God, meditate on it (Thank you sound isolating earphones), and try to really listen …

The Lord came and stood there, calling out as before: Samuel, Samuel. Samuel answered, “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.” — 1 Samuel 3:10

That is why I could very much relate to Samuel … During that search for God, I heard Him, but I didn’t realize it was Him. I saw the signs, but I didn’t realize they were the answers that I was seeking. But now, I can confidently say that I am firmly resolved and have distinguished my will from His. As far as discernment goes, I will trust myself enough to know that this is His Will … That I will stay at my current job and accept responsibility.

1Trust Me by relinquishing control into My Hands. Let go, and recognize that I am God. This is My world: I made it and I control it. Yours is a responsive part in the litany of Love. I search among My children for receptivity to Me. 

But I also understood what that feeling that made me question His will carried with it. He made this world, He controls it. Mine is onlyresponsive part in the litany of Love. My response, my love for Him … The seed that was being planted, which I thought at the time was a resistance to responsibility of management was actually a yearning to not forget about my creativity. My response, My creative response to His Call.

“Here I am Lord, I come to do Your Will.”

And oh, how I will make such a response.

1 Jesus Calling by Sarah Young (January 11th Devotion)


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