About discerning our call or vocation, the first thing to say is that we all share in the greatest one. God “calls humankind to seek him, to know him, and to love him with all our strength.” This is God’s call to all, and it tells about God’s dream: an earth peopled with lovers—with those who let the Holy Spirit lead them to love God, love one another, and love themselves—passionately and well.
How is humankind responding? Well, a look at history might be discouraging. Americans killed more Americans in our Civil War than foreign enemies killed in all other wars together. And look at international news now. You won’t find many nice stories. Look around and see how badly we have thwarted God’s dream. Humanity tends not to follow the Holy Spirit of love but instead leans into a spirit of darkness. Yet God remains faithful, patiently pursuing his project.
This is why the Son came into our flesh: to call us back into God’s dream. Our faith tells us that this call somehow resonates in every human alive. This is what Jesus said: And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself (John 12:32). Everyone has to discern this great call; and that’s the first thing to say about discerning our vocation in life.
—Excerpted from Always Discerning by Joseph A. Tetlow, SJ