This past week we started our book discussion with the Introduction and Chapters 1 and 2.We have learned a lot already. We learned what we can expect from the coming chapters.We also learned how we should see our calling in respect to our relationship with Christ. We are called to be ourselves.We are uniquely designed to fulfill our Father's purpose. Within ourselves He has placed a desire to search for our calling which should always lead us to Him.
The Introduction discusses how to use this book as a guide to taking the right actions to create a life of purpose and passion. It explains how the book offers a toolbox of principles, assessment exercises, strategies, and other resources.
There are six inventories with key dimensions to your unique design that include: you most-enjoyed skills, core values, preferred roles, personality traits, compelling interests, and spiritual gifts.
The Introduction also states that the book includes the following tools and topics:
Enlarging your vision on what you can do.
A Life Calling Map
Learning how to make good decisions within God's will for your life.
Consider emotional, physiological, spiritual, and lifestyle issues that can get you stuck.
Motivate yourself to take action.
Learn how to use your calling successfully.
It was a suggestion that we obtain a journal to record the events of our journey and that we find a couple of friends to join us.
We can use our journals to address the personal application questions at the back of each chapter. The authors also suggested that we write a prayer that expresses our thoughts, hopes and needs.
Chapter 1-In Search of a Calling
In Chapter One, the authors talk about how all of us have asked the question," What is my purpose in life?" I certainly have asked that question several times over the course of my own life.
We are looking for our place. Nora Watson in her interview for Stud's Terkel's classic book, "Working" stated that,"Most of us are looking for a calling and not a job." "Most of us have jobs that are too small for our spirit.
There is a secular view of calling in which American culture encourages us to look to our work in our sense of purpose and calling.
We are called to know the caller which is Jesus Christ and our primary calling is to be in a personal relationship with Him. Everything else is considered secondary callings.
In searching for our individual calling the Bible tells us that we are brought into this world with specific purposes in God's eternal plan. Ephesians 2:10 says that we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
God is a God of Possibilities. When He allows us to glimpse our potential, we are often tempted to retreat behind the wall of our perceived limitations. I have been there and done that, telling God all about the reason that I cannot do something that he has asked me to do as though he does not know all about me.
We are reminded that no matter where you are in life it is never to late to do something of significance with your life. God can use everything in our lives.
We are invited to experience Grace. Jesus tells us the parable about workers in a vineyard. Workers start at different times but are paid the same wage at the end of the day. The author state that Dallas Willard describes grace as " the action of God bringing to pass in our lives good things which we neither deserve nor can accomplish on our own.
Chapter 2-Called to Be You
Discovering your design and your vocational calling can be challenging. Our vocational calling emerges out of our relationship with God. The way that he has designed us includes a special combination of gifts. There has never been anyone like you in human history, and there never will be another you again.
The authors include what they explain as compass principles for finding your vocational calling.
Life Calling Compass Principles
One: God calls us to keep our primary calling primary.
Two: God calls us to use our gifts to meet needs in the world.
-Become needs focused
-All Work can be Sacred
Three: God calls us to proactive stewardship of our gifts.
-Read Jesus' story about the stewardship of our gifts in Matthews 25:14-30.
-Assess your Vocational Fit
Level One-a person sees his or her work as just a job
Level Two-Ok work that is of some interest.
Level Three-people find themselves in enjoyable work that may be satisfying for many years.
Level Four-Meaningful-people feel they are contributing to a significant purpose or giving something back.
Level Five-vocational integration, a person's work is an expression of who he or she is.
In doing God's work any job, regardless of how well it fits, gives us an opportunity to live our primary calling by being representatives in the workplace.
In the journey of living your calling, you will discover the trust in this equation: You + God's Power= Enough.
Keep recording your answers to the Personal Application Questions in your journal.
Read Part Two: Creating Your Life Calling Map. This only includes Chapter 3-Mapping Your Design (Assessments).
We would love to hear what you thought about or what resonated with you from this past weeks reading. Share in comments, Facebook or Twitter.