Calling for a new phase of life
When there is change ahead we need to seek God's guidance and ask Him to reveal a new sense of calling for the next chapter of life.

How?

This is something you need to find time to consider, probably over a period of time. It’s a process not an event. Be patient! It’s likely that some things that develop may be a surprise, others will be more obvious.

Be intentional, don’t end up with activities by default. Be ready to say no or not yet, give yourself time to consider offers and invitations to new activities and responsibilities.

You may like to take a  morning or afternoon (or several) to focus on this: sat in a chair in your home or garden, going for a walk, talking it through over coffee with a spouse or friend.

You may like to go away on retreat. See signposts below.

If it’s helpful use a journal to jot down thoughts, ideas and questions that come to you. See overleaf.

 

What?

I’m not expecting you to do all of these, they are suggestions from which you can pick…

  • Reflect on your past and how you may have discerned your calling/made decisions about your future before

    • What have you enjoyed at work and outside work?

    • What motivates you at work and outside work?

    • How did you decide what and where to study, what career to take up, a change in career?

    • Was there a previous sense of calling or vocation? Were there any Bible verses or other phrases connected with that? Is this still relevant for your future?

    • What gifts, skills and experience do you have that you could continue to use and/or share?

    • What blessings in your life do you most want to carry with you into this new chapter?

  • What new contexts might there be for using your experience?

  • What are your dreams, the things you’ve never had time to do, hobbies you’d like to develop?

  • Are there new skills you’d like to learn?

  • Take time to pray, tell God your desires & ask Him to reveal His purposes to you for your next chapter

  • Ask your spouse, a prayer partner, your home group to pray for you over the coming weeks and months

  • What do you think God may be saying to you in this time of transition?

  • Ask your spouse or a longstanding friend what they could see you doing?

  • What would you realistically like your life to be like in 2, 5, 10, 15 years?

  • What might be the first steps to reaching those aspirations?

  • Is there anything you need to lay down or give up as you move forward?

    • What feels difficult to let go of: Responsibility? Status? People? Income level?

    • What would you like your life legacy to be? That is things that will continue to have an effect beyond the end of your earthly life

    • Try writing an epitaph.

 

Using a journal

This isn’t definitive, you may well have other ideas, but here are some suggestions:

  • A section which records anything you think God might be prompting you to consider as a result of your thoughts or devotional time. This could include a picture that comes to you or that someone else gives you, a Bible verse or strong impression in a sermon or talk or home group Bible study, an event that happens. 

  • section on practical things to do/next steps

  • List current unresolved questions

  • List people you might use as sounding boards

  • Lists of possible activities for this new stage of life eg leisure, voluntary (including organisations you might like to volunteer with), paid.

  • Set some criteria for evaluating the possibilities

  • Evaluate some key options:

    • Pros & cons,

    • Questions and actions to pursue further.

    • Investigating a possibility further (eg starting a To-do list for the next steps) is often a good way to determine whether you should pursue it.

 

Signposts

  

Author and copyright: Helen Calder 2019