I believe that God is calling me for something and I’am ready to say ‘YES’ but what confuses me is that I don’t know what to say yes to. I don’t know if God is calling me for marriage, for single blessedness, or for religious life. Can you please share your stories on how you found out that God is really calling you for something? And how will you know that it is God who is calling you? I know there are stories like they we’re praying in silence and suddenly they hear God calling them to enter priesthood or to become a sister/nun. How could that happen? I really never experience God talking to me in silence.
It is difficult to answer your question specifically for you as I am not sure of your age.Therfore I shall tailor my answer a bit.
First off you are on the right track for any vocation that God may call you to as you are saying yes to his plan for his life whatever it might be. I shall also comment on your last comment about suddenly hearing God calling you. That may happen for some but for many it is more just following the discernment process and following where God seems to be leading you to, through the consultation of your relgious superiors.
There is no specific way to find Gods plan for you, by that I mean everyone does not do the same thing. However there are things you might do.(this applies to all states of life generally)
Attend Mass frequently, find a priest or nun whom you can talk to. (Either as a spiritual director or confessor as the case may be)
Ask them questions about religious life, what their discernment process was, you might get involved with your parish, find some couples who have solid Catholic Marriages and ask them how they determined they were being called to marriage. What challenges have they faced? What did they consider prior to marriage? How did they know they were called to marriage? If you attend a Catholic High School or College make use of retreats that may be offered.
There are also some good surveys provided by (religious) vocation sites which can help to clarify things for you and might help you to see where your interests may lead you.the nice thing about these is that they do not force you into relgious life but rather ask questions that can help you to clarify for yourself where you may think God is calling you .
Hopefully this will help a bit
Sr. Debbie OSC
I wanted to share in a short form my journey in the hopes others will share theirs in relation to how they found their way to relgious life, married life or single life.
I myself am a convert and at an early age I felt called to some kind of ministry to help people. By College I was certain I wanted to be a sister, and first went through the steps to Convert to Catholicism. (Pre RCIA days)
During my college days I still needed to go through discernment to see (or test) where I believed God was leading me to. I was active in our University prayer group, attended Mass frequently, had daily prayer times and generally tried to keep my spiritual life fed. I was blessed to find good fellow students who were searching for the same thing. What did God want us to do with our lives? We prayed, dated, visited religious communities, talked to priests, religious, and married couples about what their life was like.
By the time College was over I felt for sure that I had a vocation as a religious. I sought out various communities and selected an active order to apply to. I was happy during my time (6 years) with that community but alas it did not last… that happens some time.
My point thus far is seek advice, don’t close off avenues, many times God opens little windows for you to try… sometimes he is subtle sometimes not.
I then took care of family for a number of years and just 8 years ago was given the chance to explore a second religious vocation.
I took the vocation surveys listed on the previous post, contacted various communities, met with vocation directors, talked and prayed with my pastor, and applied with the Poor Clares.
If I could encourage you with one thing from all this… Don’t be afraid to date, to attend vocation retreats. Find books on being a single Catholic. Find books ( or better yet) religious to talk to. Ask questions… be honest with yourself… Do you feel called one way or the other. For married people there are many marriage programs, retreats, engaged encounters, etc.
If you feel called to religious life one thing to remember is that your initial formation is part of your discernment process. It begins with your application… and continues with your entrance… whether to seminary or convent or monastery. There are trained religious to help you in your discernment process, and if the director is honest (most are of course) they will not only help you to discern if you have a religious vocation but also do you have a vocation to their community or to another?
I hope this may be of help to some in the forums who wonder “how to know”… Basically everyone’s:nun2: journey is individual… hopefully others will chime in…hopefully some of our stories will help.
Sr. Debbie OSC
My suggestion is that you shouldn’t be so anxious about finding your vocation. I’m sure that if you try to live a good christian life and be attentive to our Lord’s voice, then when the moment comes He will speak to your heart and tell you what He wants. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you souldn’t search, ask, maybe talk to a priest about your possible vocation, but do everything in peace knowing that Jesus will guide you.
In my case, since childhood I wanted to become a nun, but I also have my doubts and difficulties and I pray that I may find a SD to help me on my path.