When Paul wrote to the church in Rome, he began his letter by saying that he was “a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle.” The word called in this verse carries a sense of purpose, intent, and direction. When Paul heard God’s divine call on the road to Damascus, he was flooded with a powerful sense of destiny.
Part of my calling is to share the gospel and to see people come to Christ. I’m called to teach the Word of God so people can be transformed by the power of God. I’m called to lead and teach others to lead so they can learn how to be full of the power of God, so they can fulfill what God has called them to do. I’m called to be a wife and a mother. A friend. And I’m called to help abolish slavery everywhere, forever.
These callings are my assignments, my vocations. The word vocation is from the Latin vocatio, which means “calling.” At its core, work is calling, designed by God to fulfill a purpose that is outside of oneself, a purpose that brings glory to God and blesses others. We were all created for work. Even before God gave Adam a spouse, he assigned him a vocation, a calling. He was to tend the garden and name the animals.
God called me to reach the modern-day slaves of this world. And I answered that call, though I felt unqualified.
But don’t we all feel that way when God calls us to do something? Whether it’s to start a business, launch an outreach, or walk across the street to meet a new neighbor and spark a friendship, when God’s Spirit gently nudges us—or not so gently nudges us— to make a bold step, take a risk, serve others, save a life, or commit, why is it that we so often hold back? At least a little?
Because we don’t feel empowered. We don’t feel qualified. We think we lack the courage, the strength, the wisdom, the money, the influence, the experience, the education, the organization, the backing. We feel like Moses when, from out of the burning bush, God called him to speak for him before Pharaoh—the highest leader in the land. And Moses answered, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent…. I am slow of speech and tongue…. Please send someone else.” (Exodus 4:10,13)
We can sound just like that when God calls us. Not me, God. I’m afraid. Weak. Poor. Incapable. Unqualified. Daunted.
There were years of my life when that’s exactly how I would have responded, but by the time God called me to start A21, I had surrendered my life to Jesus and grown to live undaunted.
Yet even when I was younger and consumed by fear, I didn’t want to be daunted, to be afraid, intimidated, or discouraged by difficulty, danger, or disappointment. I didn’t want to be unable to respond to God’s call. And I doubt that’s your desire either. I think that you, like me, want to be able to say instead, “Here am I, Lord— send me.” We don’t want to sound like Moses, stammering in search of excuses.
And the truth is, we don’t need to, because just as God gave Moses exactly what he needed to accomplish great things, he wants to equip us just as profoundly. If he calls us to slay giants, then he will be sure to make us into giant slayers. God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called.
He leads us in how to live undaunted so we can fulfill our calling. To live undaunted is to show courage and resolution. It’s to live unafraid, undismayed, unflinching, unshrinking, unabashed. It’s to be bold, brave, gritty, audacious, daring, and confident—even when we face opportunities not to be.
Trust me, life won’t disappoint when it comes to challenging us, to intimidating us. There is no shortage of ways the enemy will try to daunt us, to render us incapable of following the bold and valiant plan God has for us. But God has called us to live undaunted. To live boldly and courageously in the face of difficulty and to amaze the world by beating the odds, all for his glory.
This excerpt is from Christine Caine’s book Undaunted: Daring To Do What God Calls You To Do. In this expanded and updated edition, you’ll find transforming truths and tactics for developing undaunted faith so you can run full force into the purpose God has for your life. Find the book here.