Follow-up to the message Discovered:
Part 2 of the series Made for More
These notes are designed to help someone who wants to discover God’s calling on their life. Our starting point is to remember that we are made and called by our Creator. We do not decide our calling. We discover it. God has a unique purpose for each of our lives. When we realize that we begin to live our lives with greater intentionality and greater intensity. Our heads are lifted higher and our prayers become bigger and bolder. God intends for our lives to count, to make a difference, to have an impact on the world in which we live. It is our responsibility to discover that calling and then by faith to live bold lives that bring glory to God and make an impact in our world.
Several of the questions in the following exercise are adapted from the book, A Leader’s Life Purpose by Tony Stoltzfus. If you want to dig deeper into this topic, this workbook may be an excellent investment for you to read and work through.
So how do we discover our calling?
In the Sept 25, 2016 message we heard that our unique calling is often revealed through our strengths and passions. These next questions are designed to help focus our thinking and our praying. Remember, God is the one who is calling each one of us. So think carefully, but then pray over your answers, asking God to reveal his calling to you. These questions are only a helpful starting point. Full clarity about your calling in life may take weeks, months, or even years to achieve.
- What are your strengths? Just start writing. Make as long a list as you can. It may be helpful to think, what activities come easily to me? What talents have other people affirmed or complimented me for? What have I done that I am proud of? After you have compiled your list of strengths, go back and put a star behind the 3 to 5 strengths that you believe are your strongest ones.
- What are the strengths of your personality style or type? (If you have never taken a personality or behavioral style assessment at work or as a volunteer you can skip this question). Many people have taken self-assessments like DiSC, or the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, or Strengths Finder. Read through your report(s) again and write down the strengths of syour style. Put a star beside 2 or 3 of your most prominent strengths.
- What are the things in your life that bring your emotions to the surface? What do I see or think that gets me choked up or compels me to take action? Write these down.
- What needs tug at your heart? Make a list. It may help to think, Whose pain do I feel? Whose enemies am I willing to confront? Who do I long to protect? After writing out your list, go back and put a star beside the things that stir you the most.
- Think about the different roles you have played in your life: student, employee, entrepreneur, volunteer, spouse, parent, or friend. What activities are you the most passionate about? What do you think about or anticipate even when you aren’t doing it? What do you find to be most rewarding?
- What are your dreams for the future? Are there big things you’ve wanted to accomplish, significant milestones to reach, or a difference you dream of making in the world? After writing down your dreams go back and reread them. What are the underlying values or passions behind your dreams?
- What opportunities have you experienced? (Education, training, jobs where you learned unique skills, volunteer opportunities, travel, relationships that taught you big life lessons).
- What do you looked back on with regret? What have you learned through that failure?
Our calling is ultimately clarified by our encounter with the presence of God. So ask God to guide you through these questions. Take your time. Revisit the questions and write down additional observations. God wants you to fulfill the purpose for which he has created you more than you do. He wants you to pursue him and in that process discover your calling in life.