Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?” I said, “Here I am. Send me.” Isaiah 6:8
Isaiah witnessed the glory of God sitting on His lofty throne in a dream. He heard the angels calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord. The whole earth is filled with His glory!” Isaiah immediately recognized himself to be a sinful man with “filthy lips.” To have filthy lips as a prophet would seem to disqualify him from being a prophet. There are many days I feel the same way. I am a sinful man, and just like Isaiah, my lips are filthy. I recognize how unworthy I am to be a pastor. But this is not the end of the story. God is love. God is the One who calls. God is the One who empowers. God is the One who forgives.
Because God is love and He is the One who calls, it is my response to Him that matters, not my sin. The angel took a coal from the altar and touched the lips of Isaiah. He is then told, “Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.” This is when God asks, “Who will be My messenger?” Isaiah’s transformation from a broken man not feeling worthy to even receive God’s salvation to stepping up to be God’s messenger began with his recognition that he was a sinful man. The transformation took place when he fully accepted God’s forgiveness.
When I focus on Jesus to see His love, His holiness, and His glory, I see my own unworthiness. But He doesn’t leave me there. He picks me up and forgives me. And then He calls me into His service! When someone asks you to partner with them, you really feel accepted. And this is exactly what God did for Isaiah, what He has done for me, and what He does for each one of us. So why not take the first step in accepting God’s call? Focus on Jesus and recognize your unworthiness. You will be reminded of it everyday. But you will also receive His forgiveness, which when accepted, qualifies you to boldly step forward into His calling for your life. In my experience, you will always feel unworthy at some level because you will always make mistakes. But it is the recognition of your unworthiness that makes you fit to be called. May you experience the joy and peace of God’s call today.