Spiritual Formation

Clarify Your Calling: A New Blog Series

Last fall—just before Peter’s stroke—I had started a blog series on the subject of Interpersonal Communication. I haven’t forgotten about that important subject, and I plan to return to that series later this spring.

But at the moment, another topic has re-captured my attention—the matter of “calling.” If you’ve ever wondered—“What am I ‘called’ to do?”—keep reading, and invite your friends to join the conversation as well….


For the past three years, I have often used the “plate spinning” metaphor to describe my life. I know many of you can relate.

While I’ve always been a “busy” person—one who enjoys filling my time with many and varied projects and activities—when we added “homeschool parents” to our repertoire in February 2016, we Worralls reached a whole new level of plate-spinning crazy.

Both Peter and I continued in our full-time faculty positions—arranging for opposite teaching schedules at MBI, and hiring tutors when necessary to make the homeschooling happen. On top of that, God was opening more and precious doors for us to speak and to write. We were involved in multiple and meaningful ministries at our church. I hosted a writers’ group in my home. Peter was working on his PhD. The kids each had their own activities. And of course, we still had this old house to maintain and mouths to feed and laundry to wash and our own health to maintain and relationships to cultivate. And so on. And so forth.

Quite possibly, you recognize this refrain. And I wonder…what are the names of your plates?

In countless conversations, I acknowledged to family and friends that this wasn’t a sustainable setup, but—we thought—we didn’t yet have clarity on which plates to put down.

In endless prayer sessions, I begged God to make it plain to my small brain. These are really good plates, I kept reminding Him, but are all of them really from You?

Then, in October, Peter had his stroke. And seemingly, in one afternoon, every single plate dropped not-so-gracefully to the ground.

In the weeks since then, as God has been gradually restoring Peter’s health, we have simultaneously been slowly and thoughtfully and prayerfully considering each plate.

Which ones is God asking us to pick back up, and which ones is He not? It’s a difficult process, even painful at times.

It feels a lot like a Marie Kondo exercise—with our life.

I’ve already written a little bit about “calling” in these past posts:

4 Characteristics of God’s Call

Called to the Impossible

Daryl’s Story: When God Calls

Do What You Won’t Regret

But our current journey has me thinking about and studying the concept of “calling” even more deeply than I have before.

So, in the coming weeks, I’d like to share some of the things we’re learning. And I’d love to hear your thoughts as well. Some of the questions I already know we’ll want to address are as follows:

What does “calling” even mean?

Does it matter? And why?

To what are we called?

And how do we know?

I’m sure there are other questions that you’d like to discuss about “calling.” If so, let me know in the COMMENTS or on Facebook or via email.

Use the form below to subscribe to the This Odd House mailing list, which means that each part of this discussion can be sent straight to your inbox!

I believe this is such a pivotal topic. I don’t think I exaggerate when I say that having a clear understanding of “calling” can change the whole course of our lives.

I hope you’ll join me on this journey and that it will help you live—”on purpose”—the life God created you to live!

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1 thought on “Clarify Your Calling: A New Blog Series

  1. One year ago yesterday, a sweet 12 year old girl was called home. Her leukemia, without much warning overtook her everso quickly leaving everyone completely devastated, hopeless. In my lack of truly understanding “praying God’s sovereign will,” I thought He had given her a message to share with all. No doubt Hayley’s Heavenly Father had developed an intimate conversation explaining everything she’d be sharing through her healing from two of the worst kinds of such a dastardly childhood disease. But no, He had another idea, another calling. She was going home. Imagining just how they felt when God did not resurrect her, but called her home — her mom, dad, younger brother, best of family friends, the church there praying — is simply impossible.
    So what was her calling? What message is there for me? At first I thought “you need to go deeper with God.” That resonated for a time, but another focus emerged. Surrender. Hayley’s ultimate message was “I surrender.” For me that is calling. “I surrender” as He continues to teach me the importance of “redeeming the time.”
    I’m reminded of Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unti you.” 34 “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”

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