The greatest treasure a person can possess is the gift of purpose!
Purpose gives us meaning and leads us to action. One of the greatest questions we all ask at some point in our life, if not many times, is, “What is my purpose?” We can sometimes feel overwhelmed by this big question. We can get bogged down in the stress of trying to find out what we were meant for.
We hear from motivators that we need to “find our purpose,” which is a true statement, but there has to be more than just finding our purpose. Many think that one day they will wake up and stumble upon their purpose. But I have found that there is a better question to ask than, “What is my purpose?” The better question to ask yourself is, “Am I living with purpose?” We don’t discover our purpose…we determine it.
No one discovers their purpose as though it is out there waiting for them somewhere. It is something that you create. You see, we were created with purpose. We were designed for meaning. It’s not that some have it and some don’t. Everyone has purpose hard-wired within them from the beginning. Successful people live from purpose, while the unsuccessful are waiting for it. Purpose doesn’t come upon us, it comes from within us. You get to choose what your unique purpose is. And you get to choose different purposes for different things.
Purpose is different for every area of your life. You will have a different purpose for family than you do for your job. You may have a different purpose for your health than you do your finances. The reality is that purpose changes depending on what area you are talking about. I believe that we have multiple purposes in life. And when you believe in those purposes you will be one step closer in living in harmony with the reward of those purposes.
Here are 3 things to know about purpose…
1) Purpose changes your perspective
When we have focus, we have perspective. We can truly see the forest through the trees. It gives us a God’s eye view of why we are doing what it is we are doing and why we are experiencing what it is we are experiencing. We begin to see life’s challenges as blessings through the lens of meaning. We start to understand that challenges are not happening to us, but they are happening for us. It’s much easier to endure when we know there is a light at the end of tunnel…and no it’s not a train heading our way for a collision. It’s an end to a testing of our faith. When we see through the eyes of faith, we can see that everything is working towards our betterment.
2 Corinthians 5:7 (NIV)
For we live by faith, not by sight.
2) Purpose changes what you do
When you know what you should be doing it helps you know if you should be doing what it is you are doing. Purpose is a great filter for knowing if you are spending your time in the right ways. It gives us a compass to navigate our agenda by. If what we are doing doesn’t align with our purpose we have to be willing to let it go. My mentor, Dr. John C. Maxwell says, “You have to give up in order to go up.” We can’t get distracted with temptations that pull us away from what we should be doing. Too many people are stuck living their life doing what they don’t want to do rather than freely living the life they were meant to do. When you determine your purpose, you begin to bring clarity to what your daily duties need to be. Everyday should be getting you one step closer to fulfilling your purpose. Jesus said He only did what He saw the Father doing. He allowed His internal purpose to determine His external activity.
John 5:19 (NIV)
Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.
3) Purpose changes over time
We all have what I call seasonal purposes. These are things that God has called us to do for the season we are in. Most things in life are seasonal. They come and go. Doors open up and we walk through them. We receive orders and accomplish them. You see purpose is not a destination. You don’t spend your time trying to get to your purpose and then you are done because you arrived. No, life is a series of seasonal purposes that God calls us to. Those seasons may be weeks, months, years or decades. The amount of time does not matter as much as identifying what we are called to do in those seasons does matter. You may be in a season of growth preparing yourself for the future. Whatever season you are in be faithful to fulfill it. You will never move on to the next season of your life until you finish the one you are in. You can’t skip seasons of purpose. You move from one to the next in the order God has designed it.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NJKV)
To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven…