Jeremiah 1:4-10 (NRSV)
Verse 4Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, Verse 5"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations." Verse 6Then I said, "Ah, Lord God! Truly I do not know how to speak, for I am only a boy." Verse 7But the Lord said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a boy'; for you shall go to all to whom I send you, and you shall speak whatever I command you, Verse 8Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord." Verse 9Then the Lord put out his hand and touched my mouth; and the Lord said to me, "Now I have put my words in your mouth. Verse 10See, today I appoint you over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant."
Does God have a plan for me? For my life? When preaching, I often exhort people to listen to their calling—their vocation. That is where a person's passion and talents intersect with the needs of the world. National Geographic photographer Dewitt Jones once urged, "Make the subtle shift from pushing yourself to be the best in the world, to allowing yourself to be the best for the world."
The struggle to find just the right vocational path may be fraught with uncertainty. Perhaps God's words to Jeremiah will comfort us with the assurance that no matter what that path may be, even if it remains a mystery to us, God knows the plan. God knows us before our birth, sends us into the world, and gives us something worthy to do. Might the faithful thing be to listen to the still, small voice calling us to follow our heart toward the acts that meet the needs of others around us?
Heavenly Father, call us into lives of meaning and service that fulfill the deep passion of our hearts. Give us courage in the fact that you know us and the plans you have for us. In the name of Christ. Amen.