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Updated: Apr 13, 2021

Discernment itself should not be a stiff, brittle, anxious thing, but since it too is part of God’s will for our lives – loving and joyful and peace-filled, more like a game than a war, more like writing love letters than taking exams. (Peter Kreeft)

There is a difference between wanting to do something and choosing to do it. There’s a difference between having a dream and having a goal. There’s a difference between getting excited by something and actually taking steps to accomplish it. Taking action is necessary. Taking action clarifies; taking action purifies. Taking action becomes a test of whether you really want something or it’s just a nice idea.

I can have a dream, I can have a vision, I can have hope but until I realise that dream or act on that hope, it all remains just a dream and sadly nothing more. This is true whether your dream is to get married or to enter a seminary or convent. It is in saying ‘YES’ that the dream can become a reality. Taking the initial steps is saying ‘YES’, it is saying this is something I want to do but is it something that I will do.

Until we act on pursuing a vocation, our intention is muddy, and our desires are mixed. But when we begin to act, very quickly our intention becomes clearer and our desire, what we are truly looking for, becomes more and more purified. In taking the steps we are beginning the discernment process; we are taking action! A massive part of discernment is recognizing that even when God doesn’t give you the answer you want, he is still present and calls us again and again to prayer. During these days take time to sit quietly and speak with God, recognising that he may not give you the answer that you want, when you want it, but be content knowing he is with you and hearing your words.


  • Is there an opportunity in front of you that you might regret not pursuing?

  • What small steps can you take today, trusting God for the next one tomorrow?

By Sister Frances Kelly

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