I have had many callings during my life, but I never thought much about the process until recently. In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, when you get a church job, it’s called a “calling.” The bishop (the leader of your congregation) calls you and asks you if you will do the job.


After you agree, it is announced in sacrament meeting. Then, after church that day, the bishopric (the bishop and his counselors) gives you a blessing. It’s called being “set apart.” And in that blessing, the Lord gives you authority through the priesthood (God’s power/the authority to act in His name) to do that job. The Lord also gives you advice and extra blessings to help you in that calling.


Blessed with Power


Honestly, the setting apart blessing is my favorite part of getting a new calling. Then, after you have served in that church job and it’s time to move on to another one, the bishop will release you. It wasn’t until recently that I learned that being released also means that the special extra blessings the Lord gave you often go away, too.


As you may know, the Scouting program is ending in the Church at the end of 2019. It’s currently the second week of December. And this last week I was asked to be the ward choir director. I am so excited to do it! I was serving as the Webelos assistant leader. My bishop decided that it was close enough to the end of scouts that he released me as he called me to the new job. It made sense to me at the time — but it was the beginning of a big learning experience.


Something Changed


The first thing I noticed is that my memory wasn’t as good any longer. I wasn’t even aware that the Lord had been helping me remember things. I had to be reminded what I needed to bring to the coming pack meeting. The second thing I noticed was that ideas for activities didn’t come as easily. Then I totally forgot an event that was coming up.


There have been other things that aren’t the same too, but I won’t dwell on them. The point is that when the bishop released me, the extra blessings that I had relied on were no longer at my fingertips. I will be serving in the Scouts till the end of the year, and the Lord still helps me — I just need to ask Him more often than I’m used to. But I feel the loss of those blessings I took for granted.


You’re Not Alone In Your Calling


Through this experience, I’ve learned just how much the Lord supports us as we serve Him. It’s not an accident that you have the church job that you have. God teaches us through our experiences. And the calling you have is to help you grow, and help others grow as they work with you. Some callings are exciting; others are overwhelming.


To read more of Abby’s articles in her Living in Harmony column, click here.

But in every instance, you are not alone. You serve beside the Lord, and He sends His angels to attend you when you need help and guidance. He cheers for your success and is grateful for your willingness to serve His children and build His kingdom here on earth.


I’m grateful for the insights I’ve gained through my early release. I know that the Lord still supports me in both of my callings. And I know that good things will keep coming my way as I keep doing my best to serve the Lord the best way I know how.


I will never take for granted the process of getting a calling and the priesthood power attached to it. That power is very real. May the Lord bless you in your callings to grow closer to Him as you serve His children.

About Abby Christianson
Abby is capable and caring. She is learning more about Autism and parenthood every day. Having completed training to be an RBT (Registered Behavior Technician) for ABA therapy she is beginning to understand her son. And even though she is the first to admit she makes a lot of mistakes, she is so grateful to be on this journey. She comes from a family with many autistic members. She invites us to join her, as she shares her adventures. She wishes to emphasize that Autism is a difference not a defect. If you or a family member have autism, Abby wants you to know that the challenges can be overcome, and there are blessings in autism. You or your loved one are not sick or broken. Together we will teach the world this new language.

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