My Deep Gladness

“The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
Frederick Buechner

One of the deepest joys of my life is helping others discover their vocations… what has God put them on earth to be and to do? What has God uniquely wired them for? What interests and passions and gifts has God planted within them? Not only does this quest give me great joy, but it releases great joy in others.

It seems to me that living out one’s deepest call (or vocation) can release a deep sense of “rightness”. James and Evelyn Whitehead write that: “The delight of a vocation is rooted in a sense of its goodness and ‘fit’. I delight in the shape that my own life takes as I experience the way it fits my particular gifts and limits. It is not just the right thing for me to do with my life, it is good for me as well.” Terry Walling describes the mature Christian as involving “the coming together of ‘who’ God has shaped an individual to be, and a sense of ‘for this I was born.’”

Anyone who knows me personally would know that I am completely passionate about coaching. Part of the reason for this is that good coaching questions can help others uncover the dreams, yearnings, and gifts that God has planted in the life of a person. If we truly believe all people are called to serve God, God’s people and God’s created order, we should be asking others questions that will unlock the millions of ways God may be calling others to make a difference in this world. (This is a different paradigm to only focusing on how to fit others into church volunteer “slots”)

Here are some great questions that can help dig into vocational calling:

What are you most passionate about?
If you could do anything for God, and knew you couldn’t fail, what would it be?
What makes you most “come alive”?
What would you love your life legacy to be?
What are your strongest spiritual gifts?
What do you think God is calling you to do?
What is your vision for your life / ministry?
Can you think of ways God has spoken to you in the past? (key scriptures, events, etc.) What might that tell you about your calling for the future?
Where have you been most “fruitful” in your life and / or ministry up until now?
What’s really important to you?
Do you have a personal mission statement? Do you know how to develop one?

Imagine the fruitful Kingdom work that might be released if EVERY believer had clarity about what God has put them on earth to be and to do? And if EVERY believer had someone walking alongside them to coach, encourage, and pray them toward living out their vocational dreams? I’m pretty excited about what God might release if we were able to disciple others well into their unique callings. It’s hard to imagine a more joyous Kingdom vision than that!

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