Crossing the Jordan: Meditations on Vocation

In this Cowley Cloister Book, Sam Portaro explores questions of discernment and vocation through meditations on the life and unfolding vocation of Jesus. Rather than seeing vocation as a single goal to obtain once and for all, Portaro includes all the many dimensions of life experience, heredity, family roots, relationships, and personal maturity in his consideration of how we as Christians discern who we are called to become. Who am I, where am I going, and how do I find a life of my own? What is my calling? These questions are urgent for us all, and they were no less urgent for Jesus in youth and young adulthood. In these meditations on finding our place in the world, Sam Portaro invites his readers to navigate the turning points of their own lives by reflecting on the life of Jesus as he came to discover that he was called by God. This book helps inform our own sense of vocation and calling by exploring aspects of Jesus' vocation as it was gradually revealed to him over the course of his life. Vocation, Portaro writes, does not come as a bolt from the blue, but emerges gradually from our history, the events and people of our lives. He then sets out to show us how the life of Jesus and the words of Scripture can become part of this conversation. The meditations look at the essentials of Jesus' life, moving from the importance of roots and family (the gospel's tracing of Jesus' family tree) to the hiddenness of vocation (Jesus' boyhood and the hidden years ), temptation (forty days in the wilderness), separation from family (the calling of the disciples), first awareness of his calling (the Transfiguration), and the fruits of vocation (the road to Jerusalem). Jesus' life is the essential pattern we all trace through our lives and where we are to find our place. Crossing the Jordan has emerged out of retreats for college students, and it is provocative reading for those who are thinking about their own life choices or ministering to those who are. A good resource for clergy, teachers, chaplains, you