You've heard it said: Be the best version of yourself. What does that mean to you today? Watch the stories of two people who are discovering their best version and realizing they have a calling.
People have to choose to be the best version of themselves. Watch Karina's story to see how she chose to be the best version of herself.
Think about people you know who are actually living the best version of themselves.
How would you describe them? Are they courageous, generous, humble, generous, hard working. . . .?
What characteristics do the "best version" people have in common?
Now think about your "best-version-of-yourself." Close your eyes and try to imagine that person. Not who you want to be, but the best person you are capable of being if you put 100 percent of your effort into being that person today. Your answers to these simple questions can help you discover who are you today and your purpose in life.
Remember you were made for something. You have a calling ready to be discovered.
As a new immigrant in New York City, Francois found himself in crisis, wondering what God wanted from him.
This visual poem features Anthony Suber, a sculptor based in Houston, Texas. Anthony creates sculptures from metal, wood and found objects to tell new stories about the materials, himself and his community. He also prompts the people who view his art to see themselves and their world with new eyes, commissioning them to live differently.
God's call to you is not a generic calling, but is specific to our time in life and place in the history of the world. You discover your callings throughout the whole of life. How was God calling you as an infant or child or teen. And now, how might God's call relate to you as a young adult, adult, and older adult? God calls you as you are, not in spite of your age, but as the age you are. You have been given this life, and you have to discover God’s call as you are.
God is continually calling us to new life - as we are. We may have thought that God calls people only once, for just one purpose. In reality, it is safe to say that God calls us many times throughout the seasons of our lives, and each call challenges us to stretch further than we might have anticipated or imagined.
How might you discover your calling at this time in your life?
Watch the video, Discerning God's Call, by Jennifer Haworth and then use the reflection questions below to help you discern God's call.
Consider these three insights as you begin discerning how God is calling you at this time in your life.
1. Pay attention to your daily experience and what it stirs within you.
In the stuff of everyday experience - your hopes, your fears, your dreams, your routines - God is at work, inviting you to notice what brings you joy, what you're good at, and what others need you to do. Pay attention to where God is active in our life.
2. Reflect on what you notice, sorting and sifting in order to understand what is leading you to an abundant life and what is not.
Understanding develops through reflection, taking the time to see the patterns in your experience, and grasp their significance. While you can begin to notice and interpret God's action in our lives individually, if you want to hear deeply, see clearly, and choose wisely, trusted companions on the journey are essential.
3. Take loving action on what you have learned.
Discernment does not end with becoming aware of how your experiences are drawing you closer to or further away from God. You must eventually decide what you want to do with this knowledge. How will you act on what you've learned?
We grow into our distinctive callings if we are willing to become aware of God's movement in our lives, to reflect on this movement prayerfully alone and with others, and to take loving action on what we have learned.
Questions for Discernment
O Lord, you have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from far away.
You search out my path and my lying down,
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
O Lord, you know it completely.
You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is so high that I cannot attain it. Where can I go from your spirit?
Or where can I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there;
if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.
If I take the wings of the morning
and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light around me become night,”
even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is as bright as the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
For it was you who formed my inward parts;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
that I know very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes beheld my unformed substance.
In your book were written
all the days that were formed for me,
when none of them as yet existed.
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my thoughts.
(Psalm 139:1-16, 23 NRSV)
As I adventure with you today
be the compass that guides me,
the light that shines on my path,
the only one I follow.
As I adventure with you today
be the word that encourages,
the hand that reaches out,
each time I stumble
As I adventure with you today
let me glimpse our destination,
and appreciate the places
through which you lead me.
As I adventure with you today,
be the strength I need to follow,
and as the day draws to a close
let me rest in your embrace.
(Faith and Worship, https://www.faithandworship.com/prayers_Christian_calling.htm)
The C3 Project is a service of Vibrant Faith funded through a $1.5 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. through its Called to Lives of Purpose Initiative with the purpose of assisting congregations in developing and testing new ministry models for helping Christians discover and claim their callings.
Vibrant Faith: https://vibrantfaith.org