I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 3making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.Ephesians 4:1-3
Our scripture reading this morning begins with an interesting command, one that I believe gives even the most confident among us pause. It begins with a plea from Paul that believers should lead a life worthy of the calling to which they have been called.
How many of you feel worthy? It feels like a trick question doesn’t it.
The irony of course in this is that few of us would consider ourselves worthy in response to God’s call on our lives. And we are not alone in this. Scripture is filled with those who have felt overwhelmed at this request to be worthy of what God is calling us too. Simon Peter for instance when he realizes the true nature of Jesus, he falls at Jesus’ feet and says, “Go away from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” And Isaiah, when given the vision of the Lord says: “Woe is me, I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips.”
Both of these men understood themselves to be unworthy. And they were right. Alone, they were not worthy, but God and Jesus made them worthy. In Isaiah, the angels brought a live coal that had been on the altar to Isaiah’s unclean lips and said, “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.” Jesus, basically ignored Simon Peter’s declaration of unworthiness and said in response: “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.”
God knows that we are flawed. God sees past the flaws to the potential. God relieves our guilt and encourages us not to be afraid. That is where the transformation happens. We are not the sum of our flaws in God’s eyes. Through Christ we are made worthy. Every single last one of us.
So whatever that looks like for us today, let us boldly step into the call of God upon our life with humility, gentleness, and patience and trust God to lead us.
Let us pray. God, so often you call us to work alongside you in this world and we turn away. Our excuses are legendary. Yet, here another day comes and your call upon our life continues. Help us to find the courage we need to follow you today wherever you might lead us. Amen.