Let Your Life Speak

April 13, 2024 by Charlie Hedges − 4 Comments

Vocation does not come from willfulness. It comes from listening.” Parker Palmer

Just a couple weekends ago Pam and I attended a 4-day retreat at Richards Rohr’s Center of Action and Contemplation (The CAC). A smaller retreat of 35 attendees were drawn deeply into times of personal reflection, complemented by community transparency and vulnerability.

Yes, we had opportunity to meet Richard and his remarkable leadership staff who now lead and manage the entire ministry of several hundreds of thousands of followers.

I, with most every attendee, walked away sensing a call from the Divine to participate ever more intensely in our own calling, or vocation.

So, with that, I wish to offer you a reading from Parker Palmer that we used for personal contemplation, journaling, and deep group discussion.


Vocation does not come from willfulness. It comes from listening. I must listen to my life and try to understand what it is truly about—quite apart from what I would like it to be about—or my life will never represent anything real in the world, no matter how earnest my intentions. The insight is hidden in the word vocation itself, which is rooted in the Latin word for “voice.”

Vocation does not mean a goal that I pursue. It means a calling that I hear. Before I can tell my life what I want to do with it, I must listen to my life telling me who I am. I must listen for the truths and values at the heart of my own identity, not the standards by which I must live—but the standards by which I cannot help but live if I am living my own life…” Parker Palmer.


In my morning journal today, I wrote on a line of a song by R&B/Country artist Marcus King, “Feeling Like I Can Really Be Myself.”

After my retreat I feel as if I finally have permission to really be myself. It’s odd that permission was not granted but rather it was experienced. I guess I listened to the voice of my gut, influenced by the voice of the Holy One.

Rich blessings to you as you listen and believe so that you can really be yourself… in love of self and in loving service of those that need you.


When Your Life Speaks to You

Photo courtesy of primipil at istockphoto

4 thoughts on “Let Your Life Speak”

    1. I like this one as well. Missed you at the book group. We have no meeting next Monday the 22nd, but on the following Mon the 29th. Not sure I can make that one.

  1. I especially loved this message. I’m about Lidten with ears on your heart” by bugs message is different, listen to what you are about…. Fabulous!’ Donna Friess

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