We live in a world filled with voices and depending on the voice that is loudest, that is what we will hear. Oftentimes, the voice we hear most will actually begin to shape us. One of the ideas expressed by Mark Batterson in his book entitled, Whisper, is that a whisper speaks of intimacy. In other words, you have to get close in order to hear what is being said and if you don’t get close, you will likely miss it.
My google search resulted in this definition of whisper: speak very softly using one’s breath without one’s vocal cords, especially for the sake of privacy.
In order to hear a whisper, we must be in a quiet place, or lean in towards the whisperer. During our busy days, we are most often in the midst of many voices and actually have to make a choice as to which voice we will tune our ears to.
Some voices are in our head, previously shaped by what we have already heard or been thinking about and will compete with a current voice we hear with our ears. In the Christmas story, Zacharias heard the voice of Gabriel say he and Elizabeth would have a son and they were to call him John. Unfortunately, that was not the loudest voice in his life at the time. The loudest voice was actually more about his age and how his wife was unable to have a child. Interesting that he was then silenced until his son was born and he only received his ability to speak again once he wrote, “His name shall be John.” It seems it was only after these months of silence that he was finally able to align his thinking and speaking with the voice of the angel he had heard months earlier. In the time of his silence, I am sure he thought a great deal about what he had heard the angel say.
What a relief it must have been for Zacharias to finally to be able “to give voice” fulfilling what he was actually called to do. Here is what I find most interesting: the origin of the word for “calling” comes from the Latin word “vocare” or “to give voice.” The big question as we embark upon another year is, “What are we giving voice to in our lives, our work, our relationships?”
Think about your work-life for a moment: Are you called to do what you do everyday?
Do you have a job, a career or a calling?
– A job can be defined as something you do for money (often temporary and one you can and will change in your life.) My first job was “pumping gas” which is pretty rare to see now-a-days with mostly self-serve stations and options to pay at the pump.
– A career comes from the Latin word “cart” and the French word for “racetrack.” I did move on to a career, or actually changed careers a couple of times.
– I have discovered that you can actually fulfill your “calling” in a job or a career but the key is to fulfill your calling, no matter what your hand finds to do. I guess you can say, it’s finding that sweet spot and I think many times that simply means following the voice that is within.
For me, that sweet spot is the overlap of my gifts and passions that enable me to fulfill a kingdom need. That means I am able to help others find and fulfill their individual calling.
You can be in a job and you just desire to get another, a better higher paying job. You may be in a career and feel like you are circling the racetrack, going around in circles and feeling like you are accomplishing so little. Sounds like a frustrated life, but in the midst of that, you may need to simply quiet yourself and listen because there is a still small voice that desires to move you toward what you were purposed to accomplish in your life. This may not mean a new job, a change in career or retirement. It may simply mean a new perspective because you tuned out the many voices around you and listened to the One voice that really matters.
Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart! (Psalm 37:4)