I have known 20 year olds with just your dilemma. One became the mother of six (and loves it). Another is a priest. There are many more, and they have become parents and done many different things. Few of them knew at 19 what that would be. I know a fellow who, at 19, thought for sure he’d be an FBI agent. He’s an emergency physician now. Another was sure he’d be an actor. He’s a priest.
I’ve found that in many of the clubs I have been in, the best presidents are the ones who took the job because it needed to be done, not because they put themselves forward as best for the job. It should not concern you if you think you are not fit to do what God has in mind for you. If anything, it should concern you if you are overly confident that you are. After all, the first mark of a saint is reliance on God for the power to do God’s will. Many of them had to be dragged into their calling, because they didn’t think themselves up to the call!
Do you want to live your life to the fullest? Every day, ask the Lord, “Lord, what do you want me to do today?” Every day, ask that. Every day, listen. Look for different ways to listen. If you ask God to do it, He will make of you precisely the saint that He intends. If you’re going to Heaven, He’ll have to do it sooner or later. May as well make it sooner.
Your vocation, literally speaking, is your calling from God. It is not a dead calling that you receive once. You never get to a point where you say, “Oh, I am a father, oh, I am a priest, oh, I am…” fill-in-the-blank. Your vocation is built on what you hear, but what you hear one day at a time. You do not get a two-inch-thick script in the mail. Most of us do not have the courage to handle that, after all!
If you want to hear your calling, then every day you ask, you listen, you try to do that, you repent where you fail, you ask again the next day, and you try again the next day. You grow in love, you grow in compassion, you grow in desire to listen and to respond, but a bit at a time, two steps forward, then a step back. You will not fail to find your vocation that way.
This is the way Mother Angelica, founder of EWTN, put it:
“I thought I’d live and die a little cloistered nun in a hidden monastery in Cleveland, Ohio—and that would be it. God had other plans. A little at a time, the Gentle Jesus unfolded His plans in my life as He unfolds them in yours. You’re never alone. You must feel safe, always safe, and sure that whatever He does with you or for you, He can be trusted.”
That is one wise and saintly lady. If you listen to her advice, you will have nothing to worry about.