A Sister Reflects


Three Roadblocks to Discerning the Call of God
No Cars-1 by zeevveez | Flickr CC BY 2.0

Consider these three roadblocks to discerning the call of God.

  • Inexperience in the Ways of God: Beginners on the spiritual journey have not learned how to tune into God’s presence and action in the ordinary happenings of daily life. An excellent example from the Bible is the story of Samuel who hears his name called three times in the quiet of the night, but mistakenly thinks it’s the priest Eli who is calling him. When Eli realizes that it is the voice of God calling Samuel, he tells Samuel to respond by saying, “Speak, Yahweh, your servant is listening” (1 Sam 3: 9). The help of those more experienced in the spiritual life, such as a spiritual director, can enable you to open up to God in your everyday life and to respond better to God’s lead.

  • Fear of Disapproval: If you believe that you must always meet the expectations of other people, you may succeed in pleasing others at the cost of your own integrity and self-esteem. By consistently focusing on what others want, you make it almost impossible for you to know what you really desire in life. As a result, you have little practice setting priorities for yourself and making independent decisions based on prayerful discernment. When you give other people too much power over you, they can easily coerce you to do things you do not really want to do. When your freedom isn’t free, it is difficult to respond to God’s call in your life.

  • Unhealthy Attachments: God wants all of humanity to enjoy, love, and foster not only the people in our lives but the other great gifts of creation as well. While all of these gifts of creation help us to praise, love and serve God, they are not meant to take the place of God or hinder our spiritual growth. Our goal when discerning between different life choices is to grow closer to God. We seek to serve the world God so loved and to desire what God desires for us, knowing that if we do so we will bring about our greatest fulfillment. We are often tempted, however, to pursue lesser goals and desires that actually lead us away from the love and service of God. Unhealthy attachments such as addictions, self-centeredness, or inordinate desires for power, wealth, or pleasure can bind our spiritual freedom and block our full response to God.

Is following the call of God your top priority in life? Are there other obstacles to discerning God’s call that you would like to add to this list? Write us a comment on your reflection.

Blessings,
Sister Sara







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Get out your bell-bottoms and platform shoes, because DISCO is here!

Okay, so it's a little less dancing, a little more talking... Sisters Lorraine Réaume, OP, and Sara Fairbanks, OP, have a new video series called DISCO (Discernment Conversations): Dancing with the questions of life!

 


Sister Lorraine Réaume, OP
Director of Formation

Sister Sara Fairbanks, OP
Director of Vocations, East Coast-Midwest Vocations Promoter


Adrian Dominican Sisters
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