Sometimes, we're not sure about it. I may not think that I have a particular gift or ability and he, in his providence, draws it out, forms the skills and ta-da! I am able to serve in some way I could never have imagined.
There are, however, things that are simply "given" in my life. They cannot change.
Since religious life requires physical, mental and moral strength, some signs indicate that one is not called to the life. These people may still serve God, become amazing saints and assist in the salvation of the world, just not in the religious state.
Those with severe physical handicaps or illnesses; those suffering from severe mental or emotional illness; those whose moral life is fragile - these all will find their service of God in another way. The life is difficult, and can cause serious hardship to one ill-prepared to face this way.
Some other "anti-signs" or impediments to following a religious vocation:
- young children
- advanced age
- large debts
- a marriage that's not annulled
Although there is no "test" to help you determine a vocation, the questions in the list here can give an indication....