the good way

My Vocation

Session 7 • Justice & peace • Activation

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” - Colossians 3:23-24

Spend some time reflecting on your 9-5. Currently, what is the work of your hands? Maybe you work from home, or in an office, perhaps you are an essential worker, or a full time mom. Maybe you are in a season of being unemployed or you’re attending school. What does an average day look like for you, and in what ways do you view this activity as an opportunity to partner with God in bringing his love and redemption to the world?

The latin word vocare translates “to call,” and it’s at the root of our common word ‘vocation.’ Yet in our common language today the word often simply means a job. In fact, you might even hear someone say that their job/vocation is not their ‘calling.’ This was not the original sense of the word. A job is a vocation, only if someone calls you to it and you do it for them rather than for yourself. And so our work can be a calling only if it is reimagined as a mission of service to something beyond merely our own interests.

Personal reflection:

  1. What is my current ‘work’?
  2. Do I enjoy the work of my hands?
  3. What are my desires and longings related to work?

You may not currently think of your job as being an area in which you can serve Jesus. Often when we don’t enjoy our job we can be completely dismissive of this as an area where God can use us. We can also fall into the trap of indefinitely preparing to live - I’ll be fulfilled when I am…, I’ll be serving God more fully when I…

Ignatius believed that God dwells within our desires and that God “inflames the heart with holy desires and with attractions toward a life of greater divine praise and service.”

Further reflection:

Spend some time in prayerful reflection about the questions below:

  1. My purpose in life is to praise, reverence and serve God. How am I uniquely called to do this?
  2. What are the things that excite me most about following and serving Jesus?
  3. Where is the place where my ‘deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet’?
  4. What is God’s invitation to me about my present circumstances?
  5. How can I begin to take a step towards living more fully into the vocation that I desire?

Bring all of this into conversation with Jesus and lay your desires before him. Invite God into your present work situation. Ask him to capture your imagination and begin to show you small ways that you can partner with him to bring his love, justice and peace into your daily life.

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