In today’s Liturgy, all three readings speak of a ‘Call,’ the call of doing God’s will, to serve and to be holy. The responsorial psalm echoes, “Here, I am Lord; I come to do your will. We are all called to do the will of God and to follow Jesus.
The first reading speaks of the call of Samuel, to be the prophet of the people of Israel. The Gospel also speaks of the call of the first disciples of Jesus. The second reading speaks to us of the call to be holy.
This calls for a response to the call. To respond to this call, we must listen, pay attention, and allow God to speak to us. When the Lord called Samuel, he listened, he paid attention to the call and he responded; “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.” It was then the Lord revealed his presence to him. We are told that Samuel grew up, and the Lord, God was with him, not permitting any word of his to be without effect. What a blessing for Samuel.
God calls each of us by name as he called Samuel, to respond, to say yes, and to follow him. But at times, we seem too busy to respond.
Today, we are called to achieve the purpose of God in our lives. The call to serve, to holiness, the call to love, the call to support each other, and the call to pray for one another. We are called by God in various ministries in the Church; the call to the Priesthood, Diaconate, Religious life, Consecrated life/Lay religious life, etc.
I am here today as a priest, because I listened and responded to the call of God to serve him and his people. It was the call of God and the response that brought us to where we are today in our different professions. Thus, the call to holiness is addressed to all Christians. Pope Francis and the Second Vatican II Council speak of the universal call to holiness and service.
Coming into our calling is very important to us today. There is a difference between calling and coming. Just because God called you doesn’t mean that you responded or you came. God calls us to make an appointment with God. Despite the difficulties and challenges we go through in life, yet, God calls us from disappointment to appointment, from disgrace to grace, from disapproval to approval. God is the one who does the calling but we, on our own must do the coming and saying, yes, Lord; I come to do your will.
It’s not enough that he called you. God calling you just gave you an access, permission, divine breakthrough, opportunity to respond. To come up here without being called would be out of order. Our call opens up the doors for us to have access to God’s grace and favor in our lives.
Today, we are called to respond to God’s call of holiness, faithfulness, prayer, devotion and to serve him in truth and spirit.
God is good…all the time.
God bless you.
Fr. Daniel E. Ogbeifun