It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us. Image of woman holding a Rosary and praying at church.
Faith

Live as God Wants Me to Live

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It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? How do I know if I am following Him as I should, living my life in the way He wants for me to live it?

I have asked myself these questions many times! Sometimes I ask them every day when I am going through a time in my life where I am unsure of where I am going or I feel like I have diverted from the path I started out on. I want to be sure I am living my life as God wants for me to be living it.

It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us. Pray. Be faithful to our call in life. Image of a woman praying with a Rosary in her hands while kneeling at church.

I want to live as God wants me to live.

When I am feeling unsure about how I am living my life day to day, wondering if I am following God as faithfully as I should be following Him, I take a step back and look at what I do know: I am a beloved child of God. I am made in His image. I have answered His call to the vocation of marriage with my husband. Together we have answered His call to be parents. My husband and I have been called to homeschool our children and to be a part of the life of our church by being involved with Marriage Encounter and adult RCIA and Confirmation classes. I have been called to write.

When I start my evaluation with what I do know, I can see how I have been called to follow God. Then I am ready to ask the next question:

How can I, on a daily basis, faithfully and lovingly fulfill all God has called me to do?

It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us to live our faith in love, striving for unity and peace with others. Image of a woman sitting at a table reading her Bible with white candles lit beside her.

God does not just call us and then leave us to figure it all out on our own. He walks beside us every step of the way. He gave us the gifts of the Sacraments to help and strengthen us as we strive to live the lives that He has called for us to live.

For me, I like a clear plan. I would love to hear God say to me, “Mary, this is what I want for you to do” and then give me the details. (I don’t think I’m the only one who ever wishes for this from time to time!) Although I have not heard His audible voice telling me what to do, I do hear His voice. He speaks to all of us through the Sacraments and through His Word. It is up to me to listen and then to apply what I understand.

I read a passage from the Bible recently that was very helpful to me. It showed me how God wants for the faithful to live. It gave me a clearer understanding of my role as a follower of Christ.

The passage is from Ephesians 4: 1-7, written by St. Paul:

I plead with you, then, as a prisoner for the Lord,
to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another through love,
striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit
through the bond of peace:
one Body and one Spirit,
as you were also called to the one hope of your call;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism;
one God and Father of all,
who is over all and through all and in all.
But grace was given to each of us
according to the measure of Christ’s gift.

“Live in a manner worthy of the call you have received.”

It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us to live our vocation well. Image of woman and her son standing outside by a tree, facing the sun with their arms outstretched.

What really stood out to me was that we are to “live in a manner worthy of the call you have received.” These are instructions to follow. We each have received a different call from God. We are each to follow God as He has called us to follow Him, not as someone else has been called to follow Him. Each one of us is valuable and important. He created us each as unique individuals and He gave us specific gifts and talents as tools to use as we faithfully follow Him as we live our call.

How can I live in the manner of the call I have received?

St. Paul tells us exactly how to do this: “with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” That is a lot of information! It almost seems overwhelming to me. When I read it, I think of all of the ways that I am not humble, gentle, or patient. Yet, love is at the core of each of these virtues. When we are rooted in God and in His love for us, it is easier to love other people. When we act in a loving way towards others and remember that they, too, are beloved children of God, we will be more humble, gentle, and patient with them.

Trust in God to help.

It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us that Jesus gives us graces according to His sacrifice. Graphic image of Jesus crucified with the words "He died for us."

Can I really do it? Can I live in the manner that I am called to live? St. Paul gives us hope: “But grace was given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.” God gives us the gift of His grace to help us live the life He has called each of us to live. He stays with us and walks with us. He gives us the Sacraments to help us in our journey to Heaven. His grace is our strength.
What is the measure of Christ’s gift? His gift is His passion and death on the cross so we can be reconciled to Him and live eternally with Him in Heaven. That is the measure. That is His great gift to us. This is how He gives us grace, to this measure.
I need to do my part, then, to tap into His grace. Knowing that His grace is here for me and tapping into it are two different things. Knowing God’s grace is here for me is like having a great gift that will make my life better, but not opening it or actually using it. Tapping into God’s grace means actually opening His gift to me, using it, and calling on Him to help me know how to use it effectively.
We receive grace from God when we receive the Sacraments. We receive grace from God when we ask Him for it. By going to Mass more often we can receive Jesus in the Eucharist. We can go to Reconciliation more often and receive Jesus’ healing in our souls. We can pray more throughout the day, acknowledging God and asking Him for the grace to live our vocations well. A short prayer is all we need. “God, thank you for the grace to fulfill my vocation well” is a great prayer. God ALWAYS hears and answers us.

Live in hope.

It can be challenging to live as God wants me to live on a daily basis. How do I know how God wants me to live each day? Ephesians, St. Paul tells us. Image of woman holding a Rosary and praying at church.

We can choose to live in hope and confidence that we will follow God in our lives as He wants for us to do. In God, we can confidently place our hope. God created each of us out of love. He made each of us unique. He gave each of us our vocation and the talents and abilities we need to fulfill the duties of our vocation well. God has called each of us to serve Him and is with us as we do what He has called us to do. He gave us instructions in the Bible on how to live our lives. He gives us Himself in the Sacraments to help and strengthen us. God gives us the grace to do all these things for Him. God loves us.

Now, reread the paragraph above (out loud would be the most effective), but say “me,” “I,” or “my” where the text uses “us,” “we,” and “our”:

I can choose to live in hope and confidence that I will follow God in my life as He wants for me to do. In God, I can confidently place my hope. God created me out of love. He made me unique. He gave me my vocation and the talents and abilities I need to fulfill the duties of my vocation well. God has called me to serve Him and is with me as I do what He has called me to do. He gave me instructions in the Bible on how to live my life. He gives me Himself in the Sacraments to help and strengthen me. God gives me the grace to do all these things for Him. God loves me.

May I serve God as He has called me to serve Him, using the gifts and talents He has given to me.  

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Two other posts you may like are: “Accepting my Identity as a Child of God” and “What is my Purpose?”

Note: This version of Ephesians is from the Lectionary for Mass.

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