However, in a flash of brilliance, I wondered whether I shouldn't answer them here on my blog, as I'm here writing everyday anyway! So, one by one, I'll answer her nine questions. Who knows, you might even be interested in my answers!
Here are her questions (I'm updating this as the weeks go on with links to my answers to the questions):
Wow, a tough one to start.
1. What is your understanding of a missionary call?
Well, for starters I'm no theologian. I haven't even completed Bible college, but seeing as you've asked, here are my thoughts:
God deals with each of us differently. Just like (except more perfectly) we never interact with one person exactly the same as any other. So some people experience God's call as a sudden voice or thunder bolt. We have a Japanese friend who kept asking us for our "call verse". Only later did we realise she was looking for her own "bolt of lightning". Neither my husband nor I were called in that fashion. It was more like gentle voice guiding us (but that is starting in on your next question).
God also leads via wise counsel of friends. Via circumstance. Via open doors and shut doors. He isn't limited in how he does this.
One thing that I keep seeing is people who cannot get mission, or some other thing that God is calling them towards, out of their heads. It just keeps coming up. It was like that for me, a long meandering journey.
We've also discovered that God's calls is a continuous action. Just because we're here in Japan, where we believe (and others confirm) God has called us to, doesn't mean that he's stopped calling us. We continue to pray that if his call to Japan and the ministries we're doing here change, that he'll make our hearts soft and ready to change.
Aside from the peace in our hearts, the other thing that helps confirm his current call on our life is his financial provision. For more than eleven years now we haven't asked anyone except God for money and he's covered all our needs. To us, and our mission organisation, that is part of the confirmation that we're doing what God has called us to do.
Now that is more than a couple of paragraphs that she's asked me to do. Thoughts, anyone?