Eric Speir

Life and Leadership by the Book

Questions to Ask Yourself to Discover Your Calling

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Have you ever been asked, “What do you feel called to do?” I used to cringe when I heard this question because I wasn’t always exactly sure. It took me over 30 years to start to figure it out and at times I still think I’m trying to figure it out!

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If you’re unsure of what you feel called to do then don’t worry about it because you’re in good company. The Bible is full of examples of people who took a while to figure it out. Keep reading to learn about a few of them. Jesus was thirty years old before he was in full time ministry. I think he learned it by praying and seeking the Lord! Moses spent 40 years in the desert chasing sheep before he delivered the Israelites from Egyptian bondage. King David was 30 years old before he became king. Noah was an old man when he built the ark. Abraham was too old to have children when he was called to be a father. By now, I hope you get the point that it’s never too late!

Before we go any further I want to clear something up. Calling is not just for pastors! I believe that everyone is “called” to do something. In the church world we often assume that only ministry leaders are called to do something. This is certainly not true and it surely wouldn’t be an effective ministry model. There are more business/marketplace leaders in the world than church leaders. If this is the case, we can assume everyone’s called to do something.

I know many people who are called to work in the business world. One of my best friends is a senior loan officer at a local bank and it is obvious to me that he is called to work there. He feels like he is helping people and being a contributing member to society. (Sounds a lot like ministry doesn’t it?) He has told me on more than one occasion that he is called to work at the bank. He is good with money and he’s one of the smartest business people I know!

My wife feels called to be a stay at home mom. (She would call it a domestic engineer!) She homeschools our children and pours into their lives. She can tell you just about anything about homeschooling and has reviewed just about every curriculum on the market. She has invested herself into knowing as much as she can about it. When you mention the word “homeschool” her face lights up!

Once you realize that you are called to do something, then you can start to ask yourself some important questions. For some people this is hard to do, but as a life coach I ask a lot of questions. In fact, as an inquisitive person this comes easy for me. You can learn a lot about someone (or yourself) by asking personal and directed questions.

Questions make us uncomfortable because they force us to examine our lives. The key to answering the questions is to be honest with yourself and to take the time to answer them. It’s hard for most people to slow down long enough to reflect on their lives.

Here are some questions to start your journey with:

  • What am I passionate about? (Hint: If you talk about it a lot then you’re probably passionate about it!)
  • What am I good at?
  • What am I not good at?
  • What comes natural for me?
  • What would I do for free even if I was not being paid? (I’m doing it now and you’re reading it!)
  • What are my spiritual gifts?
  • What do I day dream about?
  • What do I spend my money on? (Hint: If you spend money on something then it’s probably important to you!)
  • What are my hobbies?
  • What do I love to do in my spare time? (I love to write and encourage people!)
  • What do you read a lot about?
  • What do you search the most for on the internet?

This is not an exhaustive list but I believe it is a good place to start. The best thing to do is to get a pen, a journal and good cup of coffee and start answering them in your quiet time.

What other questions could you add to the list? Please leave a comment below!

About Eric

I'm a pastor and writer. I like to help people to grow in their relationship with God. I live outside of Atlanta, GA. I've written a book, Stubborn Faith: 30 Day Devotional Guide For New Growth. It's available for free as a download on this blog. Feel free to follow me on Twitter at @ericspeir

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12 Replies

  1. Eric I once heard it say that if you want to know what you are called to do, think about what you hate the most. Probably a strange way to look it at that way, but I know that it has worked for me. For example I hate people going hungry, especially children, or suffering emotional and/or physical abuse. That’s what prompted me to go on my first missions trip to Jamaica a couple of years ago and work at a childrens home for a week. It really ministered to me working with the children. I recently went on a short missions trip in North Carolina to help feed the impoverished of the area.

    God Bless!

    1. Eric

      That’s a good point to make. Where our passions and the world’s greatest needs intersects is where we usually find our calling.

  2. It’s all about the intersection of passion, giftings, and opportunities. God’s providence is an amazing thing. Finding your calling truly is a lifetime task!

    1. Eric

      It’s definitely a lifetime task. It seems to evolve and get bigger as God reveals more of it to us. It takes intimacy with the Lord to truly see it all.

  3. Great questions and post. My passions is helping others find, develop, and use their gifts and talents. This is a great post about finding your calling. Also it’s to help other leader’s become better.

    1. Eric

      That’s great Dan! Can you recommend any resources such as books to help other develop their gifts?

      1. Eric, a couple books which can help others find and develop their gifts are,

        StrenghFinder 2.0 and Strength Based Leadership by Tom Rath

        Now Discover your Strengths and Go Put Your strengths To Work by Marcus Buckingham

        How To Reach Your Full Potential For God by Charles Stanley

        These are just a few, which I have read and really enjoyed.

        1. Eric

          Thanks for the resources. I’ve heard about some of these. I especially want to get the StrengthFinder book. I’ve heard that it is good.

          1. The StrengthFinder books also have free assessments. Which helps you find your strengths.

          2. Eric

            Thanks Dan! I’m putting this book on my list.

  4. Laura

    I know exactly what you mean about people thinking only positions in ‘ministry’ are callings. There are some people in my life who don’t understand the passion I have for my current job. They wonder why I stay there despite difficulties–it’s only a job.
    You mentioned that you’re a life coach. I’ve always been interested in learning more about what that actually means–I have a passion for helping others reach their potential.
    Thanks for sharing your list of questions :)

    1. Eric

      Thanks Laura! It’s easy to think that only ministers have been called to do something. It’s simply not true. Some of the greatest people in the Bible who were used of God were not in the priesthood. Based on your passion it sounds like you might be a candidate to be a life coach. I should probably add a “coaching” page to my website to help people understand what coaching is. Feel free to subscribe to my blog so we can connect further!

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