Old Meeting House Congregational Church (1643)

The Best Hidden Church in Norwich

Why was I born for a time like this?


Perhaps this is a universal question which many of us ask when we look at the world around us. Just this week in the news is the account of the mass killing in Orlando, 49 people killed by a gun-man, the murder trial of Oscar Pistorius in South Africa, the murder of a police-man in Paris and the list goes on and on week in, week out! Last night I listened to a talk about John Favel (1628 – 1691) who spent most of his life around Dartmouth in England – if you visit our website you can listen to it. So is it any wonder that in J.R.R Tolkien’s The Hobbit, Frodo laments his fate to the wizard, Gandalf: “Why was I born at a time like this?”

Gandalf replies, “You were born for a time like this.” And so it was for John Favel, and Bible characters like Jeremiah, and so it is for you and for me.

It was Jeremiah’s lot to minister to a nation that was dying. Pride, envy, wrath, sloth, greed, gluttony, and lust – all the Deadly sins – were killing its soul. Has anything really changed since the days when Jeremiah lived?

But evil days are not always bad. Paul writes, “Be very careful, then how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16). We read that verse as though Paul is insisting we get busy because the days are short but if we read these words carefully what he is really saying is that during these perilous days we can find times of unparalleled opportunity.

As a former life coach I firmly believe that God has a unique purpose for everyone’s life. God has shaped us for our destiny. This means that all our abilities are a gift from God to be put to His intended use. Many of us wonder about our careers and how can we find that particular purpose for which we’re intended? Finding purpose was a key factor found by Victor Frankel, a survivor of one of Hitler’s death camps. He observed that those who found their purpose were more likely to survive than those who did not have a clear purpose.

In Jeremiah 1: 7-8, we hear what God said to Jeremiah: “Go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.”

God’s call is first a call to follow Him in obedience – to go each day where He wants you to go and say what He want you to say. It is only as you look back over the path of obedience that you’ll be able to see what god has been doing with you all along. His plan is always better seen in retrospect than in prospect.

God has called you to a Great Adventure. Follow Him in obedience – do the very next thing He asks you to do – and see what happens! Anyone can find out what will happen,” Aslan said to the children as he shook his great mane. “Get up at once and follow me. What will happen? There is only one way of finding out…” (C.S. Lewis in Prince Caspian).


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