I'm treading carefully when I talk about my 'call journey' for fear of embarrassing people who were unwitting co-travellers!
Earlier this year some seminarians and I had a meal with - if I call him a church patriarch is that flattering or unkind? Depends who you're talking to - so let me assure that I don't mean to be unkind! A little interaction that we had stuck in my mind. For some reason in the course of discussion he told us that John Wesley recorded his 'heart-warming' experience in his journal and then never mentioned it again and that the church had made much more of the experience than Wesley ever did. Now, I actually agree with him, but I had been thinking about 'calling' and also felt the need to stir a bit. So I suggested that it was necessary to keep going back to our call, especially when things were rough and . . . and he picked up what I was saying and quite easily decided that maybe John Wesley had made more of his experience than just the one journal entry and he did quite likely keep going back to it. He also shared how the certainty of his own call had helped him stand firm time and again.
This doesn't seem like a very dramatic conversation, but it has stuck in my mind. I think because it is like an anchor. The conversation anchored me to the idea of 'call'. The call itself is an anchor in ministry. And my contribution to this conversation was an anchor which swung the ideas around. Jesus allows me to be an anchor - it's sometimes hard to see that in seminary life - but I need to believe it!