I had the privilege in the mid 90’s to work with the Lilian Trasher Orphanage in Asyut, Egypt. I would take the train from Cairo about once a month and visit the orphanage. I got to speak to the kids at services and play with them during the day. The orphanage was started in the early 1900’s by Lilian Trasher. She was about 10 days away from getting married when she told her fiancé that she had been called to Africa. He told her that he did not have that same call on his life and they broke up.
She had very little money saved when she decided to board a ship to Africa. Her parents were against the idea, but she believed in her calling so much that she went anyway. One day while she was there, someone came to her and said that a woman needed help. Not long after she arrived, the woman died. An elderly woman in the house was holding the deceased woman’s baby and said she couldn’t afford to keep it alive. Lilian took this baby, nourished her back to health and the orphanage began.
Within a few years, she had over 50 babies that she was taking care of. Today, just over a hundred years later, that orphanage has over 1,000 kids in it. They have a school on site, a church and places for the kids to learn vocations such as weaving. It is an amazing place that still operates because one woman believed so much in God’s calling on her life that she left everything behind to follow it.
Many of us believe we have a calling of God on our lives. We believe we were meant to do more than just survive 70 or 80 years and then go to Heaven. We believe that we can be a vessel that God can use to help others or to lead others to Him. Some people are called to Africa, Asia, Europe or South America, but most of us are called to be a light where we are. You may be a salesman, an accountant, a manager, a janitor or a teacher. Wherever God has you, He has called you to be salt and light.
Lilian wasn’t sure why she was called to Africa. She had not received a calling on her life to go build an orphanage. She just knew she had been called and put herself in a position to be used of God. Just because you don’t know the full extent of your calling, it doesn’t mean that you should wait to do something for God. You should put yourself in position within that calling and look for God to open the door.
Faith is about stepping out when you don’t have the full picture. It’s about leaving a fiancé and your parents knowing God has something for you to do. It’s about looking at every situation as an opportunity for God to use you in and then being willing to obey. We often look at the end of the journey or where we’d like to see God use us in time. We think of the big things we can do for God, but they all start small and with one step of faith at a time.
Has God called you to do something or go somewhere? What step of faith can you take today to put yourself in position to be used of Him? Faith is about action. It isn’t about waiting until you have the whole picture or vision. Take one step of faith today towards the calling He has placed on your life and look for Him to open doors you never saw before.