The trick is to find your vocation hidden in your life.
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I recently read, “The Art of Work” by Jeff Goins and came across this wonderful quote.
Let me offer some suggestions. Slow down! Listen to your life. Observe your life. Take in all of life with all of your senses: taste, touch, smell, sight, auditory.
I think it is also very important to exercise your sixth sense – your spiritual awareness.
How exactly does one tap into the spiritual dimension?
A contemplative practice will dip into your spiritual awareness. My practice is centering prayer. Centering prayer is four simple steps.
Select a sacred word as the symbol of your intent to open to God’s presence and action within.
Sit comfortably. Close your eyes. Interiorly introduce your sacred word as your intent to open to God’s presence and action within.
When you become aware of thoughts, emotions and physical sensations, return ever so gently to your sacred word.
At the end of the centering prayer session, remain in silence for a minute or two before you resume your daily activities.
For many, extended times of silence is very difficult. Do not become discouraged. Start small. Take baby steps. Perhaps initially you will only be able to handle five minutes. Gradually increase the time frame of your session to fifteen or twenty minutes. Slowly incorporate a second centering prayer sit into your day.
Centering prayer is one path I recommend. There are other contemplative practices that you might wish to consider. Let me list a few: Christian Meditation, prayer labyrinth, chanting, walking, painting, photography.
All of these seem to have one common denominator. They all entail “letting go” of the endless monkey chatter that goes on within your mind. You ever so gently let it float away. You open to something else that is beyond words, thoughts, emotions and even physical sensations.
How does a contemplative practice help you discover your vocation? A long term, daily contemplative practice slows you down. When you slow down, many, many neat things can begin to happen.
You begin to notice things with all of your senses that you previously did not see, hear, smell, taste and physically feel. You become more present. You become more aware.
You listen to someone whose opinion is much different than your own. Things no longer need to be placed in categories and labelled right and wrong or good and bad. They just are. Everything belongs. Things that once bothered you seem to no longer annoy you.
You begin to notice things you enjoy to do. You begin to notice things that you are good at. You might be asked to perform a new task and you surprisingly seem very open to try this new opportunity. You begin to have a new excitement for life.
The amazing thing is that all of these things were always there. You simply have discovered how to see them. You have learned to see with new eyes. You discover your vocation in your day to day life. Your vocation is no longer hidden. It patiently waits for you to see it and move forward in life with it.
Check out Jeff’s newest book, Real Artist’s Don’t Starve: Timeless Strategies for Thriving in the New Creative Age. Here is one quote that I particularly love from this book:
“Living in what Thomas Merton calls the “false self,” we fall out of alignment with who we are, and I can tell you from experience there is no greater pain than living a lie when the truth is buried deep inside you.”
If you enjoyed reading this post, please recommend and share it to help others find it.
 Jeff Goins, The Art of Work, A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant To Do, (Nelson Books: 2015)
Are you in the Philadelphia PA area? Invite me to speak or teach Centering Prayer at your church or community gathering. Feel free to contact me to obtain more information.
Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks – This is a great way to listen to books with your cell phone while you drive, walk or relax at home. I frequently listen in my car during my commute to and from work. I’m a proud affiliate.
David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings. Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners.
Check out my review of Christian Prayer Methods by Dr. Philip St. Romain. It also works well in group studies too.
Listen to Simply Good News by New Testament scholar and author N. T. Wright. It is based upon his book Simply Good News. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. Also works well in group studies.
Contemplative Light is a group of Spiritual Directors and writers. They offer a unique style of contemplative coaching based on the teachings and traditions of Christian Mysticism. Sign up for a Free Spiritual Map Session.