July 17, 2015

Serra Club vocations essay

Follow the many clues God provides in discerning a vocation

(Editor’s note: Following is the fourth in a series featuring the winners of the Indianapolis Serra Club’s 2015 John D. Kelley Vocations Essay Contest.)

By Katrina Cooper (Special to The Criterion)

Katrina CooperI have been presented with the question, “What am I doing to discern my vocation?” Being in my teen years, this is when the, “What am I going to do with my life?” questions start being asked an enormous number of times.

It is human to wonder if the decisions we make are the right ones. As Christians, we should not ask if we are making the right decision but if this is what God wants for me.

Christians often make the mistake of believing prayer is the only way to discover God’s answer. As Christians, we need to realize God does not always answer through our prayers but through various signs.

If I am to be honest, I am not quite certain of my vocation or what God’s calling is for me. Being in high school, the choices I make now will either open or close future career options. These life-changing choices are where I need God’s help the most. I pray to God, asking for his help and guidance.

I used to ask, “If God does not answer our prayers, how do we know we are making the right choices?” I now understand that prayer is one of the most important things a Christian can do. Even though God does not always answer directly through prayer, he gives clues to direct us on the right path.

God gives all of us clues, but it is up to us to notice and listen to these clues. These clues are in our daily lives, which include our talents, friends, family and random people we meet.

We can use these clues to answer the question most of us have asked, “What is God’s calling for me?”

It is unbelievable and amazing that something so huge and important is answered simply with our daily problems and enjoyments. We can gather from this that we need to try having an open mind and staying curious in order to see what direction God may be pointing us toward.

Seeing these clues for what they are is important. Taking these clues and questioning them by asking, “Why did God put him or her in my life? What are my true talents? What kind of person am I? What kind of person do people say I am?” allows us to try and figure out what God may have in store for us.

“What am I doing to discern my vocation?” is the question at hand. I can answer this simply through prayer. But there is more than just prayer. I can keep an open mind, be constantly curious and always ask questions about what is happening around me.

Using the clues God gives me will hopefully help me to recognize what God is trying to say, and help me make the right decision toward my vocation.

(Katrina is the daughter of Ted and Lori Cooper. She completed the 10th grade at Our Lady of Providence Jr./Sr. High School in Clarksville last spring. She is the 10th-grade division winner in the Indianapolis Serra Club’s 2015 John D. Kelley Vocations Essay Contest.)

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