Amos answered Amaziah, “I was neither a prophet nor a prophet’s son, but I was a shepherd, and I also took care of sycamore-fig trees. But the Lord took me from tending the flock and said to me, ‘Go prophesy to my people Israel.’” Amos 7:14-15
We don’t hear a lot about Amos. He lived shortly after Jonah who is more well known. Amos was obedient to God’s call whereas initially, Jonah wasn’t.
Amos came from Tekoa in Judah to Israel to bring God’s message. Tekoa was a small mountain village south of Jerusalem. Amos had a tough task. Every king of Israel since Solomon had been evil and his messages weren’t well received. Israel was enjoying a time of prosperity. Archaeological digs have since revealed that prosperity was accompanied by an unprecedented level of social corruption. The people weren’t interested in listening to Amos warning them of God’s judgments. They expected everything to continue as it was. History tells that Israel didn’t repent and were eventually taken captive and sent into exile.
Amos could’ve given a lot of reasons why he shouldn’t prophesy to Israel. He wasn’t a prophet. He was from “the hills” and not from Jerusalem, the religious hub. Israel wouldn’t listen anyway. Still nowhere do we see Amos complaining or running in the other direction like Jonah. He was faithful in the task that God gave him to do. He didn’t get a lot of applause, not then and not now.
Amos is a quiet achiever and a great encouragement to us. Sometimes God asks us to do things that are not our “calling” and we may think that someone else would do a better job. Nevertheless, as we fulfil the job God has for us we learn to trust him and experience his enabling.