10 Tips to Dsicover Your Vocation
Author: Staff | Source: Catholic.net
If you're reading this is because more than once you've asked yourself the question: What is my vocation? Asking yourself this question means that you have realized that, God is your Father, he loves you and wants the best for you and you, you want to follow him. Or you may not know much about what vocation is, do not have a better idea or even... You fear this issue in the Christian life, it may be even a taboo subject. However, if you are here it is because you have gained curiosity and have overcome a fear by reading this text. Don't go, sure God wants to tell you something today.
What do you think about when you hear the word "vocation"? In fact, we usually think of priests, religious, consecrated people, and there is the first mistake, to think that the vocation is only for those who are consecrated. All Christians have a vocation, holiness: "He saved us and called us for a holy vocation, not as a reward for our merits, but for free and on our own initiative. This call, which granted us in Christ Jesus from eternity. " (2nd Letter to Timothy 1, 9).
Being clear that God calls us to be saints, there we understand that it can be lived in different ways: vocation to marriage, vocation to the priestly life or consecrated life, consecrated laity. We also understand that the vocation is (1) a call from God and, at the same time, (2) a response of love to God to serve him until the end of our days, whatever the vocation to which God calls us.
"What does God want from me?" It is a question that is up to every Christian. Therefore, whether you are clear what you want, or if you have no idea where you call God, here I leave these 10 tips to find an answer.
1.Assume your doubts. You may think you're weird for questioning what your vocation is, but no, you're not weird, you're a lover of God who wants to like you. Do not recriminate yourself if you feel you have doubts about the vocational life. On the contrary, just assuming your reality, you can be truly free. Rejoice, you are on the road to heaven!
2.Ask for help, find a spiritual director. In the Face of so much confusion, ideas and mixed feelings, it is normal not to find the exit. Is understandable if you feel confused, undecided... and that is why it is highly recommended that you look for a spiritual director, a priest with whom you do a spiritual accompaniment. That’s why you must ask God to put in your path a spiritual director to help you discover what your vocation is. If you already have a spiritual director, give thanks to God for it. Do not stop praying for him to be a clean channel of the voice and love of God for you.
3.Let's get to work and pray! Taken the doubts, along with your spiritual director you must begin the path called "discernment", that is, ask for a willing heart and attentive ear to discover what is the will of God for your life. Through a solid sacramental life and a life of constant prayer, God will reveal to you what are the steps to give. At the moment, reading the word is a fundamental element. Try to have a discipline in your life of prayer, so the heart will be attuned to the voice of God. Always ask for prudence to see everything according to the will of God.
4.Stop, don't run! There's no need to rush. It may sound hard what i will tell you, but: the vocation must be chosen by conviction, not by disappointment. In this discernment, the virtue of patience is important and vital. St. Ignatius of Loyola said: "In Times of desolation, no moving". Therefore, if you are passing perhaps a love disappointment or a disappointment for some figure of the Church: stop, breathe and ask for enlightenment to God. Don't make permanent decisions about passenger sentiments.
5.Don't let your family history be an obstacle to finding your calling. Here is one of the most important reasons for a spiritual accompaniment. Maybe your story is marked by difficult times because of the marriage of your parents or maybe your parents disagree with the idea that you form a family based on marriage or against priests or religious... Do not surrender! Remember that this is a path where God calls you to follow him, whatever the vocation. Therefore, it is normal to find obstacles or wounds to heal, but if you let yourself be guided by God, and you have patience, He will reveal that, despite any opposition or problem, with Him you will always find happiness.
6.Don't stay in the abstract! Discovering God's vocation for you is a leap of faith, the vocation and mission must be fully entrusted to the Lord. Do not pond in fear, or idealistic... look, talk. if you feel that you are called to consecrated/religious life speak to priests and religious, to share your charisma. Search the Internet for the different charisms that exist. The great thing about our church is that we are rich in Charismas! If you feel your vocation is married life, look for examples of virtuous marriages both in the history of the Church and today. Neither marriage nor consecrated life is a game, make sure you know well the commitments of each vocation. The only way to take away your curiosity is to visit, go to real and everyday life.
7.Be afraid! Yes, maybe it's the hardest step, but it's the most necessary. Is normal to be afraid, it is a great step to identify what your vocation is... But from the hand of God, your spiritual director and your willing heart, things will fall by their own weight. From the moment you realize that this is a dialogue of love between God and you, why be afraid? It's God, your Father who wants to go out to meet you. Don't hesitate to ask for your Help. He knows we're scared, he knows how much it can cost us to ask him that question: Where do you want me, Sir? But don't be afraid of commitment. This path is courageous and if you are here it is because God knows that you are able to live the radicality of Love. Remember what St. John tells us "There is no fear in love; But the perfect love expels fear " (1 Jn 4, 18). Do Not live in fear, live in love.
8.Don't lose your peace. Do not desist, the path of vocational discernment can be difficult and even a desert, but do not forget that God is with you, walk by your side and nourishes you as Elijah when he surrendered (1a Reyes 19, 7). If you see that you do not advance on the road, breathe, "Take it easy on yourself and look where you're going, As Martín Valverde says. Remember San Francisco de Sales: "Be patience with all the things but especially with yourself". Don't run away from the decision either. Patience is not synonymous with cowardice. (yes, I know you may have a panic attack... But breathe, God does not move. He's still waiting for you).
9.Get up in Mary and the Saints. As I said, you are not the first with these questions, in our church we can find so many examples – marriages, priests, religious, consecrated laity – who passed through this moment in which you are now. You're not alone. Ask our Holy Mother for help, to help you say how she "FIAT": Let me do according to your word.
10.Look in the Mirror! Yes, I recommend you look for the nearest mirror and say: "I Am the son of God and God loves me." He knows you, He created you with love and called you into existence to be happy and serve him in holiness. Look in the mirror and discover in you the deepest desires of your heart. If you feel you don't know yourself, ask the Holy Spirit for help to teach you your soul. If you feel that you lack the strength or the courage to take the definitive step, do not be afraid. He's with you. St. Theresa of the child Jesus said: "The good God cannot inspire unfeasible desires, so I can, in spite of my smallness, aspire to holiness".
Remember that the vocation will not be just for you, but for all our Church. You are important to God and to the Church. As you are, God calls you. With your doubts, with your sins, with your weaknesses, with your strengths. That's how God wants you.
As sister Glenda once said: "He will make you want what He wants to give you". Be patient, ask him with constancy and humility to reveal his plans of love for you. Be on your way, God is in love with you, he wants you in his arms and in his Sacred Heart. And that same Love will tell us what is the vocation that will take us to heaven by his side, for the glory of Him and for the salvation of the world.