Duke, Roger, D. The Four Callings of William Carey: The Father of Modern Missions. Germantown: Duke Consulting Group, 2017. 108 pp. $2.99 Kindle
Roger Duke is an experienced educator at college, university and graduate levels. He holds graduate degrees in theology and religion. Regarding books, he has written six published works and edited over twenty. He retired after 20 years of teaching to pursue an itinerant career in consulting, teaching, and writing. I came in contact with Dr. Duke at the birth of my third child. He reached out to me because he too had a special needs child and was most helpful.
Dr. Duke defines the main calling of the Christian and distinguishes it from the various callings. This is all illustrated by the life of William Carey beginning with his call to salvation and then going onward to Carey’s callings to missions, India, and finally to perseverance.
Dr. Duke set out to speak on callings and why they matter. He did so from a Christian worldview defining calling as vocation, which is one’s station in life. Calling, according to Dr. Duke, is how we love our neighbor. It is obvious that Duke believes this begins with one’s call to God in salvation and then is worked out in various areas of gifting and passion.
I appreciated the succinct approach to calling and would recommend it for reading by any Christian. There is much confusion about calling from outright denial of the concept to glorifying the experience of a calling that doesn’t come near to the straight-forward application that Duke gives us. When we think of calling, we should think in terms of what Duke lists, beginning with God and going forward in what we do as our career, where we do it, and how long we do it. All of these are essential aspects of calling that doesn’t get explained in a merely mechanical way, but in the form of history and biography that takes the reader on the journey with Carey to see what made him tick, and what also may by implication make us tick.