The word, “appointed” means to assign to a specific position or an office. For example: It is giving the designation of a job to be done and you have been “appointed” by the president of the company, as someone he or she believes that you would be the right candidate to get the job done in an efficient manner. That person who appoints you for a ‘particular’ job may also believe that the job is a good match for your talents. When I am seeking to find someone for a ministry task, I often think about their skills they use in their everyday lives, how they interact with other people in the congregation, and I listen for cues that may give me hints about something he or she would enjoy doing. But, most importantly, I always pray for God’s guidance in the hopes that God will lead me to the right person for that task.
In Jeremiah 1:4-10, God appoints Jeremiah as a prophet just when he is a young boy. God tells Jeremiah that God had created him to be a prophet – consecrated in his mother’s womb – knowing that Jeremiah was the one for the task that would be at hand. Jeremiah has a rough life of trying to get the Israelites to stay focused on God and to not worship idols. Jeremiah wants God’s people to remember all that God has done for them and to worship only God. In the Book of Jeremiah, it is a constant theme of ‘back and forth’ in their dedication and love for God. Jeremiah continually stays frustrated and often wants to give up. However, God appointed him for this task and ‘giving up’ and saying “no” to God, is not an option.
We do not choose God. God chooses us! It is only through the work of the Holy Spirit that we can do the work of the Lord. Saying ‘no’ to an appointment or a ministry task – to do the work of the Lord is the same as saying ‘no’ to God. What if…Mary had said “no” to the angel who came that day to tell her she was going to have a son? What if…Joseph had said “no?” What if…Jesus had said “no” to the cross?
Let us pray…Gracious God, turn our hearts to hear our calling for you. Send us your Holy Spirit to turn our “no’s” into “yes!” Help us to realize what we miss out on when we say “no” to you. We love you Lord Jesus, Amen.