October 20, 2015

“It’s Truly a Calling in My Heart”

About the only time I listen to the radio is in the car. And, since I work from home and often walk when running errands, I'm not in the car very often. Which makes me categorize my choice to drive recently as a “God moment.”

On the air was an interview with Andrea Campbell, attorney and first time candidate, challenging a long time incumbent to represent District 4 on the Boston City Council. What caught my attention – and stuck with me – was her answer to this question, “Why should the voters in District 4 choose you, new to the process, versus someone with a proven record? Here’s her response:

“When I set out to run, I didn’t wake up one day and say ‘I’m going to run for Boston City Council.’ I prayed a lot about my God given purpose.” After talking a bit about her work with Governor Patrick’s administration and other related experience, Andrea continued, “For months I said, ‘What is my God given purpose, what is my assignment?’ This run for city council is my response. I never made it about Councilor Yancy… It’s truly a calling in my heart and for me, from the beginning, it’s about how you bring a different perspective on the issues affecting the community"

This isn’t a response I’m used to hearing from politicians. Andrea Campbell models what it means to be a disciple of Christ. She hears God calling her to use her gifts as an advocate for the people living in her district. Andrea says,“I started this campaign with prayer, and it continues to stay in that space. This truly is a calling on my heart. I share often the story of my twin brother, which most people know, and so this campaign has always been-- and will continue to be-- about bringing in more opportunities, particularly for young people in that district so that we don't get different life outcomes (like my twin brother and I). It's about bringing in more resources, it's about being more proactive, more accessible, more accountable, and going forward and looking forward with a vision of bringing more of that community together. I would also say about engaging these next generations. I'm 33. I have a brother who is 19, and there is a generation after that, and at some point we have to engage them in the civic process. They have to know that their voices matter, at the council level, and in other political spaces.”

The day after this interview aired, a copy of Demi Prentiss’ and Fletcher Lowe’s new book, Radical Sending: Go to Love and Serve, arrived in the mail. 

In the Forward to Radical Sending, Stephanie Spellers writes, 

“Demi and Fletcher offer an array of practices, reflections, stories, and resources for individuals and congregations that seek to understand Christian vocation afresh. Church was never supposed to be just what we do inside a building or at a particular time on a Sunday. Church is who we are every moment, in every place.”

As I reflected on the confluence of these two events, I knew I was being called to write about this – to share Andrea’s story and to call attention to Radical Sending, a resource designed to help people like me, become more like Andrea; comfortable articulating the role God plays in her life. Growing up, I was taught you don’t talk politics, money, or religion. Lessons learned so well that all these years later, I still find it difficult to talk publically about my faith – let alone how it guides my decisions and my life. 

Are you comfortable speaking about how your faith translates into your actions? Or, like me, do you need some help? 

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