In Acts 13 we read, "The congregation in Antioch was blessed with a number of prophet-preachers...One day as...they waited for guidance - the Holy Spirit spoke: 'Take Barnabas and Saul and commission them for the work I have called them to do.' So...they laid hands on their heads and sent them off." Acts 13:1-3. Notice the following things:
- God called out Paul and Barnabas by name. God knows your name and where you live. Whether you are hiding in a cave like Gideon or gone fishing like Peter, God knows where to find you. He does not play hide and seek with His purpose for your life.
- Their calling was confirmed by trustworthy leadership. Those who laid hands on Paul and Barnabas, confirming their calling, were leaders who took time to pray, fast and seek God's will. Such people are a gift. They will not tell you what you want to hear, they will tell you what you need to hear. They will cover you, counsel you, correct you, and confirm God's direction for your life. Do you have such people in your life? If not, get busy and find some.
- They found their calling in church. Why is that important? Because God gave us the "pastor-teacher to train [us for service], working within Christ's body, the church" Ephesians 4:12. The Holy Spirit still speaks to us today as we gather to pray, worship, and hear God's Word. One reason so many of us lose our way is that we are not in the place where God can speak to us objectively through His Word, and subjectively through His Spirit.