The other day I was in a meeting with a pastor that I am consulting with for his parish’s pastoral planning with discipleship and evangelization. The intent of the meeting was to finalize some of the discipleship formation we discussed at our previous meeting two weeks ago. I had taken a few hours to prepare for this meeting and was confident I had put together all the information he had requested. Then the Holy Spirit stepped in!
Discerning your charisms is more about being in relationship with the Holy Spirit than anticipating the presence of your charisms in a given situation. This relationship needs to be developed, strengthened and trusted. It has taken me some time in my discernment to truly experience and trust Jesus’ words when he says, “I will send you the Advocate..he will testify to me” (Jn 15:26). What is the Holy Spirit testifying? The Good News, of course! The ‘charisms’ provided to us is one of the ways that the Holy Spirit will work through us so others encounter Christ and the mission of the Church. So it is very important that we continue to strengthen our relationship with the Holy Spirit.
“In my conversation with the pastor, a question came up that he did not ask at our previous meeting regarding some formation we had already discussed for his staff.”
In my conversation with the pastor, a question came up that he did not ask at our previous meeting regarding some formation we had already discussed for his staff. For a split second I was not sure how to respond, but the words that came out of my mouth provided the means for the solution the pastor was seeking. Certainly not my words, but the work of the Holy Spirit providing the pathway He knew the staff needed in terms of their own spiritual formation. Now, I know the next question you must be asking yourself, “Were there the signs we look for when discerning a charism?” They were there. The moment those words came through me there is a sense of energy and joy that fostered a wonderful conversation. The pastor’s body language and voice tone changed from a point of perplexity to clarity. He shared with me how the suggestion truly made a lot of sense and speaks directly to what he desired for his staff. Thank you HOLY SPIRIT!
What I have come to personally experience is that our discernment of charisms is the manifestation of the mission of Christ through the wisdom of the Holy Spirit at any given time. My discernment is to be ever present to the Holy Spirit’s desire to work through me when needed. You can be sure that this experience is one that gets into my discernment journal!
If you would like to share with me which Charism you believe I experienced please send me your thoughts through the message form below!
Your friend in Christ,