What's your passion?
In religious terms, passion makes us think of the suffering and pain of Jesus in his last hours. But passion also means a profound and intense act of love so total and shattering that it drives the beloved to say to the lover, “I am yours.” Isn’t this what Jesus does?
Jesus’ Passion is not only his agony, but the handing over of his whole self without reservation—even to violence and death—to be faithful to the beloved. You. Keep that in mind as we walk with Jesus during Lent: how he gives himself up and abandons his rightful equality with God, to be with us, to suffer, die, and eventually rise—all in an effort to win us, save us, love us. That is passion.
Now, what makes you come alive with passion? Is it when you are inspired by a noble and courageous act? Or you witness an injustice that makes you burn with indignation? Does the sight of human suffering on a street corner arouse your desire to offer care? Or does the innocence in a child’s face melt you and spur you to ensure their protection?
Our hearts were made for the richness of such passion, and our lives to live out that passion. In the weeks ahead ask yourself, “Does my life reflect my passions, and are my passions aligned with the Passion of Jesus?"
- Adapted from Take Five for Faith: Daily renewal for busy Catholics,
published by TrueQuest Communications
Four steps to hearing your call
Throughout the ages, people have struggled to understand God’s call to them. Four basic steps of discernment can help:
1. BECOME AWARE
Questions to ask yourself: Has anyone ever suggested that I might want to consider being a brother, a sister, or a priest? Has someone invited me to be active in ministry? Has anyone recognized gifts and talents in me and called them forth? Do I acknowledge that these voices could be the voice of God leading me toward my vocation in life? How do I sift through all of it? How do I discern God’s voice in the midst of the cacophony around me? What do I hear? To whom am I listening? How much time do I spend in prayer? Have I asked God for assistance as I strive to listen for my vocation in life? What do others have to say to me, about me?
2. GATHER INFORMATION AND INVESTIGATE THE MANY AVAILABLE OPTIONS
Questions to ask yourself: What are my gifts? Where am I best suited to serve? What motives are driving me in my choices? Where am I resisting God’s invitation?
3. CHOOSE WHAT YOU UNDERSTAND TO BE GOD’S WILL
Questions to ask yourself: What is the most loving choice I can make? What is the choice that will help me be most fully myself?
4. LOOK FOR CONFIRMATION OF YOUR CHOICE
Questions to ask yourself: What happens within me? Is there peace, even in the midst of some doubts? What happens when I share my choice with other people? Do others say, “Oh, I can see you as . . . ."? How do I understand negative responses that occur within me? How do I interpret negative responses that I receive from family members or from friends? How do I listen to these guides? Do I seek to find God’s voice in the voices of those who know me and who love me? Do I take any criticism or concern as an opportunity to examine my motivations and find myself strengthened rather than weakened in my resolve?
Read more on VocationNetwork.org.
Cullings from VISION Vocation Network
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Contemplative nuns subject of Oscar-nominated short film
Questions Catholics Ask
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Why isn't the "Gloria" sung during Lent?
What do you love about community life?
Discover Your Path: Best of VISION
Read our e-book Discover Your Path: Best of VISION Vocation Guide found on Amazon.
“Discovering our vocation in life is absolutely impossible without coming to some awareness of our own life stories and a deep appreciation of the advice and support of friends,” writes Friar Douglas Adam Greer, O.P., in VISION 2002. “Getting to know what makes us tick, what energizes us, what vision of life gives us hope, pounded-out and pulled-together in the mortar and pestle of friendship, is the process through which we come to make an informed vocation choice.”
The articles collected in Discover Your Path will help you pound out and pull together information and insights into where God might be calling you—a process often referred to as “vocation discernment.”
Short takes for VISION Community Sponsors
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VISION READERS, please let us know what more we can do to help you in your discernment or ministry. We welcome your feedback. Please share your own stories on the positive influence that priests, brothers, and sisters have had on you.
Contact Jennifer Tomshack at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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