From nucleus - Winter 2018 - just ask : questions from students
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CMF dissects your dilemmas
I'm feeling a bit stressed about hearing God and knowing his call on my life. I'm not wanting to miss his plan for me, especially in regards to where he takes me and my work in the future, whether in the UK or overseas. Any help appreciated!
First, thank God for the fact we have options. So many don't. We grapple with this because we are highly educated, mobile, have passports and a profession that unlocks many doors. Thank you Lord.
Remember that God is in control, and that his guidance often comes through multiple means and over time. Also he's more interested in you than what you do, in our attitudes more than our actions. We should ask ourselves:
Tim Keller says that wisdom is a path, not a door. In fact, life is described as a pathway nearly 800 times in the Bible. We don't just passively wait for God's calling to come to us. Rather the Bible says that what makes you who you are — the steady left right left right — takes you somewhere.
As we make good decisions in the small things, the big things follow. Our wisdom, our decisions are shaped as we do the left right left right over years — after a period of time you become the kind of wise person who knows how to make the right choice.
So discerning 'am I called to go overseas?' will follow a lifestyle of following Jesus in the small things.
Having said that, as we seek the Lord he can and does supernaturally show or confirm to us, and often those around us, what is our unique path of most fruitfulness for him.
Here are three pointers to help:
God speaks primarily through Scripture; get to know the Bible well! Use it to test our motivation and other revelation. He also uses the Holy Spirit, God's inner voice prompting us (Isaiah 30:21; John 14:16) so spend time in worship and prayer, and listening to the Lord. Revelation may also come as a prophetic word from others (1 Timothy 1:18; Romans 12:6). These things are landing strips for God to land his truth on and change you. One of the daily left right left right things.
Part of our responsibility is to work out how God has shaped us. What are the deep desires of our hearts? What experiences might have shaped us for a certain role, or people group? How might our personality fit with some aspects of medicine or situations?
It's hard to find wisdom by yourself — friends, mentors, counsellors are all needed. We all need prayer, comfort, or challenge — wisdom is found in community.
CMF's International Track brings together groups of like-minded medics and nurses to help you explore what international medical work really looks like, seeking God's plan together - a way of working through questions together. More information at: cmf.org.uk/international/international-track