Resource Review – The Call: Finding and Fulfilling the Central Purpose of Your Life by Os Guinness

According to Guinness, “No idea short of God’s call can ground and fulfill the truest human desire for purpose and fulfillment.” This very popular book by Os Guinness delves deep into ancient faith traditions to help the believer be encouraged as they seek out God’s call.

Uncovering God’s Call for Our Lives

Many of us who have been raised in the church have spent a great deal of time and effort working to uncover God’s ultimate calling on our lives. Perhaps it has even caused us some level of stress and anxiety, leading us to ask questions like:

  • “What if I miss my calling?”
  • “How will I know if this is the right path for me?”
  • “What if this good thing isn’t God’s best?”

But I believe that when we start spiraling into such anxious questions, we have ultimately missed the heart of God. Perhaps it’s as simple as doing that thing that makes you come alive.

Understanding Your Purpose

Jesus did not give us the desires of our hearts only to force us into a role that makes us miserable. Please, don’t spend hours and days and months and years agonizing over your “purpose,” terrified of missing some uncracked holy code from God. That is no kind of abundant life. Start simply. Micah 6:8 says to “act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Start there. Then, try a few more things:

  • Do the things that make you come alive.
  • Create beauty.
  • Love people.
  • Show compassion.

When you are already following the simple instructions of Micah 6:8, it’s likely that your purpose will be at the apex of these things.

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Accepting the Truth about Your Calling

“I find myself both emboldened and empowered by the broad context for fulfilling our call that Guinness puts forth. And by holding up so many examples from the halls of faith, Guinness encourages us that the type of calling he is suggesting has been lived over and over again in history, and many others have seen calling in much the same way he does. This is certainly no new or novel idea, but a rich and fulfilling distillation of Christian thought and life. Do not expect an exposition so much as a journey through the halls of calling’s house. If you’re expecting a ‘how to’ on perceiving and fulfilling your specific occupational calling or job you will be disappointed, but this book is all the more for you. That is what I came to it for, but I have walked away with a far greater appreciation for the true calling of our God beyond specific occupational endeavors.” – Tammie, Reviewer.

The call of God is rarely out-loud, and he does not often write on our walls. But that doesn’t mean that his call on our lives need be any less clear!