The Lord called me before I was born,
while I was in my mother's womb he named me. Isaiah 49. 1 - 7
In the Old Testament reading appointed for today, the prophet Isaiah begins his prophecy by proclaiming that he was called to his ministry in his mother's womb. He says from before his birth he was commissioned to do the work of God, and that work included prophesying the restoration of the kingdom of Israel and the extension of salvation to the ends of the earth.
One of the prayers of dismissal at the end of the service of Holy Eucharist says,
"And now, Father, send us out to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve you as faithful witnesses of Christ our Lord."
Every Sunday we are "called" to do the work God has given us to do. Every week we have a chance to listen and discern what God is calling us to do. The words Call and Discern have been misappropriated as only for those called to Holy Orders. With help from my friend and mentor Christopher Martin, author and creator of The Restoration Project and Discipleship Groups, I have come to realize how essential call is to all of us, lay and clergy alike.
And so, when I read from John's gospel in the Daily Office this week that Jesus said to his disciples "Come and See," I realized that Jesus invites us each week to follow him, to serve as a faithful witness to his message, and to live in to our acceptance of his invitation.
Perhaps we were called in the womb, but we must accept that invitation and "do the work God has given us to do!"
Have you RSVP'd? Come and See!