If you’re a Catholic single discerning your vocation, it’s easy to get frustrated. Maybe you’ve found yourself wishing God would give you an obvious sign about the path he desires for your life. Is he calling you to the vocation of marriage? What about religious life? You may wondering if you’re the only one struggling with discernment.
The truth is that you’re not alone. Not only can you surround yourself with people living in the same season of discernment as you, but you’re also surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. The holy men and women who go before us are cheering us on from Heaven, and they want to encourage you, too.
Check out these twelve quotes if you’re in need of some vocational discernment encouragement today.
Have a personal favorite quote on discerning your vocation you’d like to share with other Catholic singles out there? We’d love to read them in the comment section!
1. Remember to make time for silence
Our lives today are full of noise and busyness, which can make vocational discernment challenging.
If you’re struggling to make room for silence, find encouragement from these words from Saint Teresa of Calcutta: “We need to find God and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is a friend of silence.”
2. It’s not meant to be a scramble
Discerning your vocation and your place in the Catholic church isn’t meant to be a rushed, anxious process. God desires to reveal your vocation in life, and he isn’t going to leave you orphaned in the discernment process.
“Discovering vocation does not mean scrambling toward some prize just beyond my reach but accepting the treasure of true self I already possess,” Thomas Merton explains. “Vocation does not come from a voice out there calling me to be something I am not. It comes from a voice in here calling me to be the person I was born to be, to fulfill the original self hood given me at birth by God.”
3. Your vocation isn’t a puzzle
God doesn’t hide things from us to tease us. In prayer, the Holy Spirit can inspire a sense of vocation in your interior life. But it’s not meant to be a puzzle you have to solve . . . or else.
“Our vocation is not a sphinx’s riddle which we must solve in one guess or else perish,” Thomas Merton wrote.
4. It’s not about the right amount of planning
Don’t think of the discernment process as a list of things to do. God isn’t waiting for you to complete your check list to reveal to you whether he’s calling you to marriage, religious life, or a life of ministry.
“Vocations aren’t the result of planning, but an encounter with God that changes your life,” Pope Francis encouraged.
5. Don’t discern your vocation out of fear
“Let nothing disturb you, let nothing frighten you. All things are passing away: God never changes. Patience obtains all things. Whoever has God lacks nothing; God alone suffices,” St. Teresa of Avila wrote. She gives a great reminder about the importance of peace in the process of vocational discernment.
6. Sacrifice isn’t something to be afraid of
Discerning God’s mission for your life will require sacrifice. But that’s not something to be afraid of.
“There is no place for selfishness, and no place for fear! Do not be afraid, then, when love makes demands. Do not be afraid when love requires sacrifice,” Saint Pope John Paul II said to Catholic singles discerning their vocation.
7. Trust God with your vocation
God desires your good. He’s a father who has his children’s best interest at heart.
“Lay all of your cares about the future trustingly in God’s hands, and let yourself be guided by the Lord just like a little child,” St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross wrote.
8. Ask God what he wants for your life
Prayer is a conversation with God. But it’s also meant to be an opportunity where we conform our will to the will of the Father. “The best thing for us is not what we consider best, but what the Lord wants of us,” St. Josephine Bakhita said.
9. Our Lady will walk this path with you
Not only do you have the support of the saints, but you also have the Blessed Mother as a source of encouragement.
“Our Lady accompanies us also in making this definitive choice, the choice of a vocation, because she accompanied her son on his vocational path, which was so difficult, so painful. She accompanies us always,” Pope Francis said.
10. Be on the lookout for joy
During your vocational discernment, it’s important to seek joy. “You will know your vocation by the joy that it brings you,” wrote Dorothy Day.
11. Listen to the inspirations of the Holy Spirit
The desire that God places on your heart is there for a reason. He doesn’t inspire us without meaning. “God would never inspire me with desires which cannot be realized; so in spite of my littleness, I can hope to be a saint,” St. Therese of Lisieux wrote.
12. Pray for God’s will in your vocation
Don’t be afraid to surrender your vocation to God. “Our concern must be to know God’s will. We must enter that path: if God wants, when God wants, how God wants,” wrote St. Gianna Molla.
Looking for more encouragement?
If you’re looking for more encouragement as you discern your vocation, join a community that’s been thriving and serving single Catholics since 1997!
Every month thousands of new members register and join Catholic Singles to meet other faithful Catholics. While most are here for online Catholic dating, others are here for fellowship and community. Whatever you are looking for, Catholic Singles can be your home.