Called According to Purpose (continued)
But there is this extra factor that while that is true and must be, perhaps I had better stop here for a moment or put in a parenthesis (let no one thing that this implies that they are individual Gideons or Elijahs or any other of this company of the chosen). We are not going to label ourselves Gideons and this and that and something else. You see, you must realize that God's whole purpose embraces the Church. It is a Church purpose, it is not just individuals. And in line with that full thought of God concerning the Church as the called, you and I are parts of the whole, parts of a whole, parts of something comprehensive and inclusive. We are not just individuals. And what I want to impress upon you and I want you to see is this: that it may be that you are called to be a part of an instrument which is collective and corporate which God is seeking to have for Himself to meet a need. And that your definiteness of calling is a related one, it is not just an individual and separate one.
I know how that appeals to our romantic hearts. I know how when a young man I read about D. L. Moody and read those so well known words about D. L. Moody and he said that he had heard someone say that if God could get hold of a man He would show what He would do with and through a man whose heart was wholly toward Himself. And D. L. Moody said, "I said, I'm going to be that man. I'm going to be that man." Well, that was all right for Moody and I suppose it's all true. But you know there is an appeal of that to this man. "I'm going to be," what? A D. L. Moody or something like that? Rather the emphasis is upon the first three words, is it not? "I'm going to be."
No, no, the discipline of all that may come along the line of our having to be a part of something that God is doing, just a part, but a part. And it is in that whole in a related way that have to have just as great a sense, listen! Just as great a sense of being called as I would have if I were singled out as an individual. Have you got that! Tremendously important thought. You would have a tremendous sense of vocation if the angel of the Lord came to you as he came to Gideon and singled you out and mentioned you by name and said great things to you personally. You would say, "That is a calling indeed, I am called according to purpose." But we have got to have that in a related and corporate way, dear friends, just as strongly and really. God has made me a member of the Body which is the vessel of His eternal purpose. And as a member, not as the whole body and not as separate from the rest but as a member, my eternal vocation is found. It has got to be very real. The ends of God may be reached through companies, through groups, just as much as through individuals. Well, have got that let us go on.
(continued with # 13)