… And these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. Romans 8:30
Every summer my kids and I go to the BJ Hickman Magic Show at the Palace Theatre. For almost every trick he does, BJ calls a different child up onto the stage to help him. Back in 2013, he called Zack up for a trick where he stuck spoons all over his arms and face. It was fantastic!
In 2014, when BJ did the same trick, Mason was desperate to be chosen. Unfortunately, he wasn’t. But that’s life. We don’t always get the same opportunities other people do. Although that’s extremely hard to accept, especially for kids, it’s important to do so, and move on.
Lo and behold, when we went to see BJ this summer, Mason WAS chosen – for the same exact trick! How crazy is that?!
As Mason stood on stage, with spoons hanging from his face and arms, I was bursting with joy for him. I knew how much it meant to him to finally be chosen. I offered up a silent prayer of gratitude.
Imagine my surprise when Mason told me later that being up on stage didn’t feel right. I was so confused. He had been desperate to be chosen. Moreover, he’s my performer. He LOVES the spotlight. I asked him to explain.
He said, “I only got chosen because you were all pointing at me when he was looking for volunteers. He only chose me because of all of you.”
Mason was partially right. In advance, Zack and I had discussed that when BJ was looking for volunteers, we would jump up and down and point at Mason. We knew how much it would mean to him, and how badly he’s felt in the past when he hasn’t been chosen.
However, there were a lot of other families doing the same exact thing. In fact, two kids in the front row had made signs in advance that said, “Pick me.” They mounted them on yard sticks and waved them like crazy every time a volunteer was needed. One was chosen for a trick, but not the other one. BJ was trying to be fair and choose from different sections of the audience each time.
I told Mason that although he was partially right, his statement wasn’t completely true. It was his turn; he was supposed to be chosen. We just helped things along.
I also told him that being chosen came with responsibility. Like Zack didn’t brag and boast three years ago to rub it in with Mason, Mason shouldn’t brag and boast to make Jocelyn feel badly that she wasn’t chosen. Mason understood, said he wouldn’t brag, and finally reached a point where he could fully enjoy the fun he had had on stage.
God has predestined something glorious for each one of us. But we can’t get to it alone. We need love and support along the way. Even if it’s just one person jumping up and down for us, that’s enough to buoy us high enough to reach that calling.
When we do finally get there, we too have a responsibility. God’s calling comes with a purpose. At its core, it should glorify Him, not us. So we can’t brag and boast. Instead, we have to carry out our calling with humility and grace.
That being said, I do believe God still wants us to find joy in our calling. If our calling feels like a sacrifice, we’re probably not on the right path: we may have confused someone else’s calling for our own.
When it is finally our turn, and our true calling, we should feel fulfilled, equipped, and truly, truly blessed that God deemed us worthy to finally be chosen.
Questions For Reflection:
* Have I identified yet what I believe God is calling me to?
* If so, does it feel like an honor? Or does it feel like a burden?
* If it feels like a burden, could I actually be living out someone else’s calling and not my own?