Catholic Vocations
Archdiocese of Melbourne
Discernment

Searching for happiness?

The question of vocation – the path along which each of us is called in our search for happiness – our search for God – is one of the deepest of human questions.


Mary's Call as a Model for Discernment

At a young age Mary had given herself to God to do as he willed. She awaited the coming Messiah, as all Jews of her time, pondering and reflecting on the sacred scriptures and prophecies of old. Her heart was full of expectancy. Little did she know of the great part she was to play in the redemption and salvation of the world. The following meditation is based on Lk. 1.26-38. It serves as a reflection and can be of some use in discerning a vocational calling.

Discernment - How do I know?

In your life so far you have certainly seen single people and married people. You have probably also seen priests and nuns/brothers (consecrated people). But have you really looked at these people and thought about how they are living their life for God (living out their vocation).

Four Steps In Discernment

ImageThe process of making a decision about your life with help of the Holy Spirit is called "discernment." It is the process of discovering God's will for you.

In this process you deal with two persons: you and God. During the process, you will get to know both better. As you begin, remember that both you and God ultimately desire the same thing -- your happiness. You want to make a decision about your life that will bring you happiness. Therefore, you and God are not working at cross purposes, but for the same goal.

The process of discernment, through often a struggle, in not complicated. It consists of four steps.

Discernment Checklist

prayerStep One: Prayer
You ask, God responds. Then what do you say? The first step in praying well is to realize to whom you are speaking - God who is your Father - and ask for what you need. In discernment, what you need is God's light to discover his plans for your life. Ask him with the confidence a child has in his mother or father when he asks for something that is truly good for him. How many times did Our Lord tell the Apostles the basic step of asking in prayer for what they needed? Faith and asking in prayer for what we need are two threads woven throughout the Gospel.

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