Owen Tomlin is a mountain craftsman from Breathitt County, Kentucky. In order to supplement his income, like many other folks from the economically depressed areas Eastern Kentucky, Owen has turned to cabin craftwork. Owen has developed an outstanding turkey call. The unique two-chamber design gives this call the best sound I’ve ever heard. Turkeys seem to find it irresistible. The call lures an unexpecting turkey into range and with the crack of a gun, it is all over for bird.
We need to be able to discriminate among the various voices or calls we hear or we could end up like the turkey. Paul alerts the Corinthians to the fact that there are many kinds of voices in the world (1 Corinthians 13:10). We must learn the meaning of the voices that catch our ear. Being able to discern the difference between God’s call and a “siren call” is crucial. In Greek mythology, the Sirens were dangerous yet beautiful creatures that lured sailors with their enchanting music and voices. The end result was shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island.
There are many siren calls in our world today. I want to cite just a few.
- The Call of Materialsim: The account of the Rich Young Ruler in Mark 10:22 and the parable of the Rich Famer in Luke 12:16-21 point to the call of materialism.
- The Call of Pleasure: 2 Timothy 3:4 speaks of people who are lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God. Hebrews 11:24 tells us that Moses resisted the call of pleasure, “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.” The Apostle Paul speaks of the call of pleasure in 1 Timothy 5:6, “But she who lives in pleasure is dead while she lives”.
- The Call of Cheap Religion: David in 2 Samuel 24:24 refused to offer to the Lord “that which costs me nothing”. Mary would have nothing to do with miserly giving to Jesus (John 12:3). Neither would the Widow in Mark 12:24.
- The Call of the Self-Centeredness: The call of the “selfie” echoes across the land. The new phenomena of taking self-pictures with your cell phone are a new manifestation of an old problem. Obadiah 4 provides strong advice for the ‘selfie’ person: “Though you ascend as high as an eagle, and though you set your nest among the stars, from there I will bring you down, says the Lord”. We should heed the wise words of Jesus in Matthew 23:12: “And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
These and other worldly voices call us to live a lower way than God’s way. They may sound appealing, but they invite shipwreck. Here is how you can know if it’s God’s voice or a sirens call: “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if anything is praiseworthy – meditate on these things” (Philippians 4:8 NKJ).
Don’t be fooled like the turkey! Learn to know the Lord’s Voice.
~ Brother Roy