“We’re not meant to be passive people of faith, we’re meant to use our gifts for God.” Lila Rose, Founder of Live Action
If I sat up late trying to think of a definition of the universal call to vocation that goes out to every Christian, I could do no better than Lila Rose’s statement above.
We are, all of us, every single one of us, called to use our talents for God. That does not necessarily mean jumping publicly into the mouth of a policy volcano like abortion. That’s what Lila Rose did, and she’s had quite an impact with her work.
Every Christian vocation, if it is based on a surrender of our self to God and lived out fully, will contribute its part to bringing the Kingdom. I’ve often said that the mother sitting in the bathroom with a croupy baby while the shower runs is closer to Jesus than any of the splashier Christians out there. I believe this.
Every man and woman who has children should never forget that they already have a vocation that is more important than any other. There is no higher vocation than raising your own children.
Even that is not our first vocation. The first vocation of every Christian is to be loved by God. He does not love us for what we can do for Him. He loves us for ourselves. Christian vocation should begin with that. If you don’t understand that, you can not succeed as a Christian, no matter how hard you work at it, for the simple reason that you will inevitably come around to believing that the results of your efforts are your responsibility and that they are how you can “earn” God’s love.
The failure to understand that He loves us for ourselves alone and that the results of our work for Him are not our province leads to many evils. I believe it is part of what entices so many Christians who get into politics to ultimately give in to the pressures and begin to do evil in order to try to achieve good. They’ve forgotten that they don’t need to earn His love, that, in fact, they can’t earn it. They don’t remember that they are not called to succeed. They are called to be faithful.
Our first vocation is to let God love us. Our second vocation is to do whatever tasks are put in front of us for the Lord. If you are a nurse, remember that your patients’ father is the Lord. If you teach school, teach your students as if they were His children. If you are a father or mother, care for those little ones as if they were God’s children, as well as yours.
Because, in fact, they are, you are, we all are. We were made to love, and we need to do our daily tasks with that understanding.
Christian vocation is the leaven, the mustard seed, the Kingdom-bringing work that God has entrusted to us for our time in this life. It isn’t something we do to get Him to love us. It isn’t a way of earning bigger rewards from our heavenly Daddy in hopes He’ll love us best. Christian vocation is just one way of loving Him back.
We are, in the words of Lila Rose, not meant to be passive people of faith. We are not meant to bury our gifts in a tight little world of private piety. Our calling is to live our lives and do our work as if we were doing it for the Lord, and by that, to change the world.
A CNA article describing Lila Rose’s speech to the Catholic Information Center says in part:
Washington D.C., Jan 19, 2013 / 06:02 am (CNA).- Prayer, trust and a willingness to be used by God are among the most important tools in working to defend the dignity of every human life, said Lila Rose, founder of the pro-life organization Live Action.
“When we say ‘yes’ to His will, it will take us on an adventure that we could have never imagined,” Rose said in the Jan. 17 talk at the Catholic Information Center in Washington, D.C.
A 24-year-old Catholic convert, Rose was raised in a large, pro-life family. She discovered the truth about abortion at age 9, when she found a book about the procedure in her parents’ house.
The experience stuck with her, and as she learned more about the scourge of abortion through the words of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, she “couldn’t think of a greater injustice” facing the world.
Feeling called by Christ to care for the “least of these,” especially, “our unborn brothers and sisters,” Rose turned to God, asking Him to “use me somehow to save some lives.”
“We’re not meant to be passive people of faith,” Rose said, explaining that “we’re meant to use our gifts for God.”
A combination of prayer and surrender to the will of God led Rose to start what would become Live Action – a group dedicated to exposing the abuses and lies of the abortion industry – at age 15 with a group of friends in her parents’ living room.
When Rose went to UCLA for her undergraduate degree, she took Live Action with her. Finding few resources for pregnant women on campus, she conducted her first undercover operation, pretending to be pregnant to see whether the university health clinic would be supportive of her having a baby.
The clinic workers pushed strongly for abortion, while telling her that she may not receive any support if she chose to keep her baby. Rose wrote about this experience in “The Advocate,” a publication that she founded, which now has a national collegiate circulation of more than 200,000 readers.
Rose then went undercover at her local Planned Parenthood, posing as a young teenager who was the victim of statutory rape. She secretly filmed the visit, in which clinic employees agreed to help cover up the rape. (Read more here.)
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