Have you noticed how action and quality of action is often dependent on who requests the action? What I mean is – well – take Johnny for instance. Johnny’s 16 years old and lives in a middle class neighborhood nearby to his buddies from school, and smack dab next door to Susie. Susie’s cute. Susie’s 16, too. Johnny wakes up mid-Saturday morning, runs a quick ‘get ready for the day’ routine and heads for the door.
“Hey, John,” his Father intercepts him, “I’ve got a policy sales appointment today, and I was hoping to make a good first impression when I roll up. You got time to wash my car this morning? Just a quick one?”
“Oh, man, sorry Dad, Ricky’s parents let him turn their basement into a game room with a 52” HDTV. And the Penn State/Ohio State pre-game comes on in 15 minutes. All the guys are going to be there …”
“Alright. I suppose I can run it through the car wash before the meeting. Have a good time. Say, ‘Hi’ to Joe Pa’ for me!”
“Thanks, Dad!” Johnny rocks the house with a slamming front door, flies down the steps and cuts hard left up the sidewalk. An errant scooter can’t slow him down as he hurdles over it. Then, comes the voice his neighbor, Susie Cute, and she freezes him in mid-air.
“Hi, John. Can I ask you something?”
“I’m supposed to take my driver’s test today, but my dumb brother went off-roading last night and the jeep is a mess. I can’t show up at DMV like this. Could you come help me wash this nasty thing? Please?”
“Absolutely. No problem. Let me show you how to really make it shine!”
See what I mean; action and quality of action dependent on who requests the action. That’s why Paul urges the Ephesians, “Live a life worthy of the calling!” It’s one thing to be called by Susie Cute, by the Penn State football program, by the U.S. Marine Corps … you name the call. But when the call comes from the Master of the Universe, comes from the unsurpassed riches of His glory, comes at the price of the body and blood of His Son, and with the guarantee of His abiding Spirit – that would be the calling beyond all callings!
Has God called you? Called you by name and frozen you amazed in your tracks? Has He redeemed you, renewed you with the grace of His call? Has he cast a blessed future with the promise of His call? Then how will you live? What does a life worthy of His calling look like. Paul begins to paint the picture.
It is a life of humility, gentleness, patience, forbearance, and love.
Are you cringing already? Already on your knees, bowing repeatedly before Jesus, wailing, “I’m not worthy!” There’s more. It’s a life of peacemaking and unity-keeping; of expressing the grace of God through my giftedness to the Body. A life devoted to building the church up, so that EVERY member might enjoy unity in the faith, maturity, and utter Christ-likeness.
Speaking the truth in love, building each other up in love – these are the actions I’ve been called to. What will be the quality of my actions? As Paul says at the close of today’s text – the blessings don’t come unless every member does it’s part.
Pray: Lord, help me to do the work and live the life that shows the depth of my appreciation for Your calling. Lord, help all the parts to do their work.