Discerning a vocation? What to do when our vocation finds us first.

Ever have the experience of looking for something, like car keys or a cell phone, just to find that it’s right before your eyes? Sometimes vocations are like that.

Case in point—my friend, Nancy Lee Smith, IHM.  Sister Nancy began working full-time as an iconographer several years ago at St. Joseph Studio. Even as she began creating wonderful icons, when people asked about her ministry, she tended to reply, “I do artwork.”

She vividly recalls the day that changed. It was at a local gallery showing, and her works were among those displayed. “I looked around and suddenly realized that I don’t just do artwork, I am an artist.” It was a moment when “doing” and “being” came together. She clearly understood that she was already living her vocation as an artist.

Sister Nancy’s story reminds me that a vocation isn’t just “what we do,” it’s also who we are. Her story reminds me that God is always at work in our lives, and sometimes it just takes awhile for us to see it clearly.

Have you had an “ah-ha” vocational moment, and how did you respond? I’d love to hear your story! Please share it by writing in the comment box below.