How am I being called?

What should I do with my life? “There’s fire in my belly” but I don’t know how to use it. Maybe I should think of getting a job or going to grad school. Perhaps I should travel before I get trapped in ordinary life – maybe I don’t even want an “ordinary life”. I suppose faith has got something to do with it. Sometimes I dream of marrying but it’s hard to meet people and really get to know them. I guess I could go to that Catholic Singles website! I think I’d like to have kids of my own one day – I’d make a good dad. I don’t know though – sometimes I feel I want something else in my life but I don’t know what.

When I was at college and I went to Mass I often looked at the priest – he was a great guy – he helped me get through that tough year and he was fun too. Sometimes I wondered if I could be a priest like him and then I got scared. My friends will think I’m crazy but that feeling comes back to me from time-to-time.

I used to volunteer at the soup kitchen with those sisters. They weren’t boring like I thought they would be – they did a lot for other people – poor people, and I felt happy when I was with them. That sister who taught me at college was great as well – she was really “in touch” and made me think about my life. I’m not sure I could be a sister though – are any women joining these days -it’s a bit frightening? My Mom and Dad would “flip their lids” if I told them I was thinking of being a sister! I don’t even know who to talk to about it.

A couple of months ago I was channel-flipping on T.V. and I saw this programme about some young people who went to a monastery for a whole month in the “boonies”. Can you imagine a whole month in silence? They got to pray with the monks and nuns and to chat with one every day. They helped out on the monastery farm too. That bit was cool. It’s a weird life though. Does praying all the time really help the world? But I can’t seem to get that programme out of my head. I’m a “party-animal” but I feel drawn to that silence and to prayer. Perhaps it’s really what this world needs. I’d love to just visit one of those monasteries one day.

I’ve been a nurse for 20 years now and I’ve loved my life. I’ve got a great apartment and good friends but sometimes I feel empty. I keep asking myself, “is this all there is”? My Church means a lot to me and I’ve wondered if maybe I should check things out and offer to go to a poorer country with a missionary organization. I’m single so I’m free and I feel I want to make a deeper commitment. I’ve even thought I might join a religious community but I guess I’m too old at 44 but maybe I should check that out.

Does any of this sound familiar? Sometimes it’s really hard to decide. Our world is complex and life can be messy but in a way it’s in the complexity and the messiness that the important questions in life are found. God is often in the questions and so is my life’s real meaning. Am I courageous enough to enter into the questions of my life?