Discovering Your Calling, Slowly

discover your calling slowlyDo you know exactly what you were created to do?

If not, you’re not alone.

Occasionally, I see an interview with a person who stands out in their field who says, “I always knew I wanted to be a ___” Fill in the blank – writer, doctor, musician, entrepreneur, missionary, or whatever.  To be honest, I often come away from those interviews feeling a bit envious of their clarity.

Even after 42 years of life and 16 years as CEO of a company I started, I still sometimes wonder what I want to be when I grow up.  (Not that I’m seriously considering changing jobs any time soon.)

That’s why Denis Haack’s post Discovering Your Calling, Slowly resonates with me.   He writes…

Some people walk through life and discover their calling and gifts as their pilgrimage unfolds. The point is not how fast you uncover such things but whether you are faithful to what you know, to what has been revealed so far. The danger is not missing your calling, but being disobedient, or disdaining your gifts because you’d prefer something else. It’s a good formula for becoming increasingly bitter about life.

Many of us were not created for a singular, highly-focused purpose.  We may have several smaller callings.

We may also have a clear calling for a season and then find ourselves meandering through the desert wondering what God has in store for us next.  That meandering phase doesn’t necessarily mean we’re lost and certainly doesn’t mean God has abandoned us.

Sometimes God leads us on the long and windy road to exercise and strengthen our faith, to see if we’ll trust Him when the future is unclear, to see if we want Him even more than we want clarity of purpose.

Sometimes we have gifts and passions we never knew we had.  Sometimes they have to be discovered through trial and error, by taking a risk and trying something new. Sometimes we stumble onto them when we find ourselves doing something we didn’t’ plan on doing, but hey it’s kind of fun and we may actually be good at it too.

If you’re calling is still not clear, pray, be patient, and take intentional steps towards doing things that you seem to have an aptitude for and like doing.

Discuss

  • Do you know your calling?  If so, what is it and when did you know it was what you are called to do?
  • If not, what steps are you taking towards discovering your calling?

18 Responses to “Discovering Your Calling, Slowly”

  1. It takes time to determine your calling. For some it takes longer than for other. If you’re not sure you have found it, keep looking.

  2. It is so much easier to go to work when you love what you do. You are happier because you have a passion for what you are good at.

  3. After 42 years of life and 15 years since I started my first business I am not sure what is next either. I took some time off from running any business on a day to day basis and that was fine. After all running a business can be difficult dealing with people (employees, government, competitors, etc.) and the drama can be a pain.

    But, in the end it is all worth it and that is why I am going to spend some time on new projects and focus on ones I like.

  4. I am very clear about my purpose and I am living it. I am an innovator, so I am a risk-taker and only a small percent of humanity finds what i am committed to even worth looking at, but it doesn’t bother me… I am happy as happy can be. My mission is to develop a technology that raises people’s vibration so they can start living a life of a human being not the life of a sheep or serf. Hey, I told you it’s cutting edge… lol

    • Sophie, that’s great that you’re so clear about your purpose and even better that you’re living it!

      >>develop a technology that raises people’s vibration so they can start living a life of a human being

      Sounds interesting. What is a person’s “vibration?” and how can technology raise it?

  5. I’m so glad that I discovered my calling early in life in conjunction with my military career I have been an entrepreneur ever since I was 6 years old. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog and I look forward to reading more.

  6. Thank you Paul, nice article. I agree that doing what you like and following your heart certainly gets you where you’re meant to go. It seems entirely logical to me. The thing is that sometimes it takes real courage to follow your heart, because it may not be what others expect of you. But if you do, I believe the rewards are great.

    • True, Dave. It takes a lot of courage to pursue your calling, but anything less will leave you with angst and regrets.

  7. I find that few people really knew what they wanted to be as a kid, other than baseball players and astronauts. Some were guided (or forced) by parents, but most find their career path by chance … based on the opportunities available at a given moment.

  8. Up until now, I still do not know what I really want and what my calling is. But I take things one at a time and always believe that God will lead me to the right way.

    • Mike
      I am so with you! I find it a bit ironic that most of the commenters are strong in their callings. I don’t think this article implicates that it’s only if you know from your youth, but speaks to those who wander; I’m pushing sixty and coming to the conclusion that I may never have clarity. And, believe me, I have worked at figuring it out!
      So, I’m also taking one thing at a time, and tell folks I’m a “renaissance” type. . .i.e. jack of many trades, master of none. ;-P

  9. I really appreciate what you have shared here Paul. Seven years ago, I found myself in a wandering state with God. Knowing what I was doing as a career was ending as I sensed and confirmed God leading me out of that. I had no idea what was next. After much prayer and humility, He led me though a process that later I developed to help others. It has been a process. One of seeking, asking and knock. He has always been faithful to answer. Through this process I learned I have a deep heart for those that need direction and that in that place of need I help to bring you order in Christ. In this, God has led me to developing and running a business, Seven, to help clarify your direction in Christ by asking the right questions. It has been an amazing journey so far. One that I wouldn’t trade for the world at all. Easy, no. But so simple, as we stop to listen and follow Him. If we here at Seven, can be a help to those needing direction, we’d love to be. We don’t have all the answers, but Christ does. I have found that as I seek, ask and knock in faith, He always answers. Hope this contributes to the conversation. Thanks for continuing this important conversation through this post.

    • Hey Shayne, thanks for commenting and sharing your story! I watched the video on your homepage and looked around your site. I’d welcome a guest post from you here any time. Keep up the good work!

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