How do I discern if a call to do something big is really from God?

Steven PutmanQandA

Question: How do I discern if a call to do something big is really from God?

Answer: Each day we face plenty of decisions about following God: whether or not to pray, how to treat people, and how to prioritize our time. Sometimes there can be something much more significant we discern: a vocational call, a promotion at work that requires a move, or a new ministry position at church. In addition to a pro-con list or a cost-benefit analysis, here are a few things to prayerfully consider and to talk over with trusted individuals.

Does it conform to God’s will revealed in the Church? God doesn’t call us to do something that contradicts the moral law. Will it encourage spiritual growth? Sometimes we need to choose between multiple good options. Consider the personal impact on you and others you are responsible for, like family. Other times we might be invited to do good for others, but when we assess our other life commitments, we see that saying yes to this would actually impede our prior responsibilities in the long run. Does the call seem consistent? This isn’t to say that God won’t do something new. Even so, consider if the call is consistent with your gifts and abilities. Can you see a “through-line” so to speak, with how your experiences have led you to this point? Do others confirm it? Share your reflections with trusted, insightful confidantes. Have they seen the same things you have, or are they bringing up new points to consider? Humbly add their relevant points to your considerations. Don’t forget your gut. After you’ve carefully considered everything in your mind, don’t neglect your instincts. Does your heart say yes or no?