“I have appeared unto thee for this purpose.” (Acts 26:16)
I often speak of our purpose in life. I prefer the word “purpose” to the word “plan.” The idea that God has a plan for my life lends itself to a sovereignty/God is in control kind of thinking.
People who feel they have missed God’s plan must often deal with guilt and despair. If I missed Plan A, then I must settle for Plan B. What if I messed up and missed Plan B? Some of us might be on Plan L, M or N by now. That isn’t very comforting.
I prefer to speak of God’s purpose for our lives because a purpose is something born in you by the Spirit of God. It doesn’t change. It can sit idle for years or even decades, but once we plug in to true fellowship with God, our purpose springs to life. We can lose time due to our mistakes, but we will never lose our purpose.
I don’t believe that God is as concerned about where we are as who we are. It is the “who” that determines the “what” and “where” of our lives.
I am a teacher. That has been my purpose from the moment I was born again. However, I didn’t know this for many years. I was more concerned about where I should be ministering than I was about who I was in Christ. A teacher will teach no matter where they are. Who we are in Christ will adapt to the surroundings and circumstances. Our purpose will come to the surface sooner or later. I will teach in some form or fashion wherever I am. It is my purpose.
Yes, we can and should be led by the Spirit as to where we are and what we do, but sometimes I feel that we can get too mystical about this and lose sight of the real issue. Let your purpose shape your circumstances rather than looking for the perfect circumstances before you step into your purpose.
Our purpose will grow, develop and mature over time. The expression of that purpose today will be different from the way it is expressed in ten years. The more we choose to walk in our purpose now, the more clearly we can be led by God into His purpose for our future.
There is something divine in you that seeks expression. The gifts and callings of God don’t change, but they must be discovered.
There are two main signposts on the road to discovering your purpose.
1. What are you passionate about? What do you love doing that blesses others? Your purpose from God will always include blessing others in some way. That is God’s nature. Many tend to think that God will call them to something they hate. Don’t let dead, religious thinking steal your purpose. In His presence is fullness of joy! That which gives you joy, vision and faith for the future will probably be a sign of what God has placed in you.
2. What bothers you that you want to correct? We often discover our purpose by responding to issues that bother us. Some are motivated by the horrors of sex trafficking. Others are touched by the needs of disadvantaged children. Others love music and worship and have ideas to bring new life to church worship.
Typically, if what we love to do coincides in some way with that which we want to correct, we’ve probably discovered our purpose.
My purpose as a teacher was discovered by understanding my passion to answer questions about God, and set people free from dead religious thinking. Though I was teaching and pastoring a church in Chile, I really became passionate when confronted with some bad teaching that was putting people in bondage. My teaching ministry today is a direct result of wanting to correct bad doctrine and being passionate about seeing people blessed. That is why I write daily posts on Facebook, have a teaching web page, answer emails from around the world and teach at Charis Bible College!
Have you discovered your purpose from God?
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (Rom. 8:28)