Prayers for Discernment

My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going
I do not see the road ahead of me
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think that I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you
and I hope I have that desire in all I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this, you will lead me on the right road
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore, will I trust you always.
Though I may seem to be lost
and in the shadow of death,
I will not fear, for you are ever with me
and you will never leave me to face my struggles alone. Amen.

(Thomas Merton-Trappist Monk)

Lord Jesus,
Following you is a bit like jumping in at the deep end.
Help me as I discern how I can best be me.
Be close to me as I search out which way of life is best for me.
Give me your grace to trust in God, your Abba,
and to walk the path that draws me closer to you.
you know my deepest desires.
Give me the courage to follow with a ready will and open heart. Amen

(Catholic Vocations Australia)

My God,
You have created me out of love to know you, love you
and serve you in a way no one else can do.
Your plans for me are far greater than any
I might dare dream for myself.
Lord, grant that I might be open to your grace
to know the next good step in your plan for my life.
Give me the courage and the generosity to say “Yes”!
Show me your will for me, O Lord, and help me to say with Mary,
“I am the servant of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word. Amen.

(Bishop George J. Lucas)

Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are, quite naturally, impatient in
everything to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.

We are impatient of being on the way
to something unknown, something new…
and yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through some stages
of instability …
And it may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you. Your ideas
mature gradually. Let them grow;
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on as though you could be
what time (that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will) will make you tomorrow.

Only God could say what this new spirit gradually
forming within you will be. Give our Lord the benefit
of believing that his hand is leading you, and accept the
anxiety of feeling yourself in suspense and incomplete.
Above all trust in the slow work of God.

(Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J.)

Additional Prayer Resources