CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 17 November 2018

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You are called, you are gifted

Tricia Bølle
 
Jesus is calling YOU.
 
“I know well the plans I have for you, says the Lord.” – Jeremiah 29:11
 
That’s great that God knows those plans, but what about me? How am I supposed to know God’s plan for my life?
 
The Risen Lord chose you from the very beginning, graced you with unique gifts at your baptism, and called you to a very special and unique purpose in life to divinely inspire and touch the lives of those around you with Christ’s love and healing.
 
God works through faith, not roadmaps. He places clues and signs along the way that, with prayer and discernment, will guide us along the path of holiness he has intended for us. Indeed, if we look back on our lives, we realise how people and events—both good and bad—have shaped us and lead us to where we are now. The road ahead requires faith, trust in God, prayer, and discernment.
 
St. Teresa of Kolkutta, in speaking of her own vocational journey, once said that she had no idea that God would one day lead her down the path to become the founder of the Missionaries of Charity, a religious congregation providing Christ’s healing love to those on the margins of society in over a hundred different countries. All she knew is what God revealed and called her to in that moment, in the needs of the society and the people he put before her and how she felt called to respond. “I know well the plans I have for you, says the Lord.” 
 
Our task of the moment is to follow the Lord here and now. By following the Lord in how he reveals his will for us each day and then over time, we can follow a faith-map, written by God, not a roadmap written by man. So, how and where is God calling you right now? Do you feel the presence of God working in and through you? Do you recognise the steps in his faith-map?
 
You are also gifted. In reflecting charitably, generously, and honestly on your life, what experiences and patterns emerge of God working through you to touch another’s life, or even an entire community? What unique encounters or gifts have you experienced that left you in awe or wondering if you are the only one who experienced things that way? Many of these experiences are footsteps along the faith-map that God has designed especially for you. Your unique personality, gifts, time, and place within the tapestry of life converge to make God’s mercy and love manifest for the healing and salvation of others. 
 
Learning how to discern the spiritual gifts we have received at baptism, by looking at God already present in our lives to transform the world around us in ways that we find life-giving and transcend the average experience, will help us to better understand the unique calling in Christ that we have received. For truly we are God’s beloved, and each of us is called to something very beautiful and precious, to be his light to those around us.
 
In the day-to-day busyness of our lives, especially with the breakneck pace and high performance expectations of living and working in Hong Kong, it can seem difficult to find time for our faith. Yet when we are really honest with ourselves, we find that our greatest purpose isn’t so much in our exams or getting the right job or closing an important account, rather, it is in pursuing the One Who Pursues Us —Jesus, the One who is calling us into a life of newness, flourishing, mercy and love—and witnessing to the intimate relationship we have in Christ with the lives of those around us.
 
As young professionals and adults seeking to further integrate our faith more deeply into our lives, it is time that we allow Jesus, the One who pursues us and delights in us, to catch us. 
 
Yes, Jesus is calling you. He is calling you to be his hands and feet, to be his voice of healing, wisdom and encouragement. He is calling you to make his name wonderfully known to those in your midst. He is calling you… to be a hero. He is calling you to be a saint.
 
 
 
 
 
 
To find out more about discerning your spiritual gifts and calling in life, we welcome you to participate in
the annual Called & Gifted Workshop, May 5 and 6, at the Catholic Diocese Centre and Holy Spirit Seminary, taught by the
St. Francis Xavier Lay Missionary Society on behalf of the Catherine of Siena Institute. RSVP at:
www.laymissionary.org/called-gifted