What to Do When Those You Love Don't Support Your Calling

christian christian women women empowerment women in the ministry Feb 22, 2024

As women of faith, embarking on the journey of answering God's call often brings us unparalleled joy and purpose. Yet, in the midst of our excitement and determination, we may encounter a roadblock we never anticipated: the lack of support from those we love the most.

It's a scenario many of us have faced – the disappointment of confiding in family, friends, or church communities only to be met with skepticism, resistance, or even outright rejection. When the ones we cherish fail to rally behind our calling, the pain cuts deep, leaving us to question our path and the validity of our dreams.

The truth is, the lack of support from loved ones can stem from various sources – jealousy, fear, or a misguided attempt to shield us from perceived harm. While their intentions may be well-meaning, the impact of their disbelief can be profoundly hurtful.

Yet, as daughters of the Most High, we are called to press forward, even in the face of adversity. Here are 6 essential tips to help you maintain your perspective and motivation as you navigate the challenges of answering your divine calling:

1. Seek Clarity in Prayer

When faced with opposition, it's crucial to seek clarity from the ultimate source – God Himself. Spend time in prayer, seeking His guidance and wisdom in discerning your calling. Remember the words of Proverbs 3:5-6, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Trust that God's plan for you transcends the doubts and opinions of others.

As you commune with the Creator, allow His peace to permeate your heart and mind. Understand that prayer is not just a one-time event but an ongoing conversation with the Almighty. In moments of uncertainty, let prayer be your compass, guiding you through the storms and affirming the authenticity of your divine calling.

2. Understand Their Perspective

While it may be difficult to comprehend, try to understand the perspective of your loved ones. Are they acting out of genuine concern, or are their actions rooted in their own insecurities? Do they have valid points about potential pitfalls that would be helpful to consider, or do they lack a full understanding of the vision simply because God didn’t reveal to them what they told you?

Sometimes it's hard to see why you are not receiving the support you desire from that individual, and you could benefit from engaging in further dialogue to understand the root behind their concern. After pinpointing the underlying issues, ask God for wisdom on how to engage that individual in the future. If you discern that they are voicing their concerns from a place of love, reassure them of your appreciation and respect for them. Make it clear that your pursuit of your calling is not a rejection of their values or beliefs. Affirm the importance of your relationship and express your desire for their continued presence and support in your life.  On the other hand, if your friend or family member is voicing concerns from a place of jealousy or malicious intent, you might have to set some new boundaries with them. 

3. Set Boundaries

It's essential to establish healthy boundaries when faced with unsupportive individuals. While their opinions may hold weight, ultimately, you are responsible for your own journey. Respectfully communicate your boundaries and make it clear that while you value their input, your decisions are guided by faith and conviction. If that person doesn’t respect your boundaries, or you even sense that they might potentially sabotage or get in the way of your progress, you might have to make a difficult decision to end the relationship or distance yourself from that individual. 

Although it's hard, you must remember that God’s calling on your life is a precious jewel that must be protected. By setting boundaries, you create a space where your calling can flourish without being stifled by external pressures.

4. Cultivate Inner Resilience

In the face of opposition, it's crucial to cultivate inner resilience. Understand that challenges are inherent in any significant undertaking, and your calling is no exception. Embrace setbacks as opportunities for growth and learning. Remember that resilience is not the absence of difficulties but the ability to bounce back from them.

Nurture a mindset of perseverance, knowing that each hurdle you overcome strengthens your resolve and deepens your faith. As you encounter obstacles on your journey, let them serve as stepping stones, propelling you closer to the fulfillment of your divine calling. With resilience as your companion, you'll find the strength to withstand external doubt.

5. Embrace Personal Growth

View the lack of support as an opportunity for personal growth. Every challenge is a chance to refine your character and strengthen your resolve. Embrace the discomfort and use it as a catalyst for transformation. Consider how the opposition can contribute to your personal development and mold you into a more resilient, compassionate, and understanding individual.

Remember that personal growth is a continuous journey. The difficulties you face in answering your calling are not roadblocks but milestones marking your progress. Embrace the process, learn from every experience, and allow it to shape you into the woman God intends you to be. As you grow personally, your ability to navigate challenges and inspire others will expand, making your calling even more impactful.

6. Get Support Elsewhere

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, our loved ones may not be able to provide the support we need. In such instances, it's essential to seek support elsewhere. Organizations like Women in the Ministry offer a safe haven for women of faith to connect, empower each other, and receive the guidance and affirmation needed to pursue their calling wholeheartedly. 

Surround yourself with a supportive community of like-minded individuals who share your vision and passion for ministry. Lean on fellow sisters in faith who understand the challenges you face and can offer encouragement and solidarity along the way.

At the end of the day, remember that your calling is a sacred gift from above, entrusted to you for a divine purpose. While the lack of support from loved ones may pose challenges along the way, let it not deter you from fulfilling God's plan for your life. Embrace the journey with courage, knowing that He who called you is faithful to see you through to fruition.

As Romans 8:28 assures us, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." May this truth anchor your soul as you navigate the complexities of answering your divine calling.