What is the purpose of your life?
Wow, what a pointed and difficult question, right? Tons of books and movies have been made on the subject and there are thousands of different “possible” responses. Some say it is to love well; others say it is to live a good life. Many say, “Who knows? But is it really important to know that anyway?”
I would say yes. Yes, it is.
When we know the Bible, it is clear that our existence in this world is no accident. The Bible says that God has a plan and a purpose for everything. It also says that there is a plan and a purpose for your life. You aren’t just floating around, breathing in oxygen and expelling carbon dioxide. Your life is more than sleeping, eating, and working. Your life has a purpose, and that purpose is to glorify God.
Well that’s great. But what does that mean?
As I have been thinking about all that I want to get out of 2014, I am aware that this year can only make sense if I see it from the perspective of the big picture. So often, especially those of us who are young people, we can get so busy planning the future and all the big things that we want to accomplish without realizing that it has to start sometime and somewhere. That’s awesome that I have the calling to work in orphan care and with victims of human trafficking. What a great dream. However, if I am not moving toward that goal right now, even in my attitude and heart, and if my goals and vision for this next year don’t fit into the bigger vision for my life, it is just a pipe dream that will never become a reality. It means that I am not truly dedicated to my calling.
So what does that have to do with glorifying God? In my own words, I would say that glorifying God has everything to do with imitating Christ and worshiping Him through obedience of heart and mind, and also in action. It is not just what we do, but it is the foundation of who we are becoming in Christ that makes the difference. Then what we do naturally flows out of the strong relationship we have with Him. It means that just as Jesus was the Light of the world, we are called to be the light of the world as well. My calling will look different than yours, but that does not mean that my light is meant to shine any brighter or dimmer than yours. It is absolutely essential that you spend time with God, asking Him to give you direction. While the details may not come right away, God desires to give you a vision – His vision for your life.
So what is a vision? It is a general statement and understanding of your purpose. It is rooted in Biblical principles and gives direction for outward expression. It is inspiring and feeds the fire of holy passion inside. It is an agreement between your heart and God’s heart. It is something that only the Holy Spirit can accomplish through your life.
My vision for this next year is to grow in personal leadership and to go deeper in my relationship with Christ. I will be a good steward of those within my area of influence and will seek to expand that area of influence so that Christ’s name might be glorified. I will perform with excellence every responsibility that I am given. I will live offensively (as in sports) rather than defensively. I will choose courage. I will choose grace. I will choose confidence. I will choose to love others deeply. I will shine my light wherever I go.
No one can ever know what will take place in the future, but the vision should not change, come what may. Whether I am in Ecuador, China, or the United States, I can be a light for Christ. Whether I am in a ward for the terminally ill or the mayor of a city, I can shine bright. Whether I am housebound or fully mobile, a heart that is truly following the purposes of God will always be looking for and will find open doors to impact the world around them. The problem is, most people have no idea the level of influence they have or could have. We go through life living minimally while a watching world stares in hunger for godly inspiration. If there is ever a regret that I could have at the end of my life, it would be the regret of not truly BECOMING the ambassador of Christ that I was commissioned to become. I am not satisfied with living a mediocre and unremarkable life. I insist on becoming all that I can be for the glory of God.
And it starts today. This very moment. Don’t waste another second.
I challenge you to spend time in prayer and to write out the vision for your life and for this year. And if you would like, share it with us! We can challenge and inspire each other!