I was in prayer this morning, asking God to provide greater clarity in my personal mission, that unique something I am called to do, that only I can do. That missing piece in the heart of Christ and the Church that can only be filled when I commit to live it out. I especially prayed that my personal mission, whatever it may be, would be made clear in light of or in harmony with the mission of one of the orders I'm currently discerning. Below are the charisms or "mottos" of the three orders I am interested in.
Sisters of Life: to lay down our lives that others might live
Dominicans: to contemplate and to give to others the fruits of our contemplation
Handmaids of the Heart of Jesus: to live in imitation of Mary as handmaid, virgin, and mother in the diocesan life of the Church
I should make the disclaimer that I have taken these "mottos" directly from the charism/about us pages of these orders' websites, and have not necessarily heard them "straight from the horse's mouth." Excepting the Handmaids, with whom I have already been in somewhat regular contact, ever since my retreat with them.
I know I must not merely think about which mission I like best, or which order has the most appealing apostolate, or which horarium is most suited to my disposition/current routine. I must pray about it.
Furthermore, I know that since I have not yet clearly "received" or "discovered" my heart's greatest longing and my life's unique purpose, I cannot perceive the unity or harmony both missions can participate in.
But I put my hope in the Lord, in this, as in all things, for He has said to me (in one of my favorite Psalms)
"As the sparrow finds a home and the swallow a nest for her brood, my home is by your altars, Lord of hosts, my King and my God."