For the last couple of weeks I have been struggling with the purpose of my existence. I am very blessed; I have a close relationship with God, I have a wonderful wife, an amazing family, great friends, and I work in a field of my passion. I’ve got food to eat, water to drink, a roof over my head and I serve the youth at my church; I could go on and on. Still, with all these blessings I manage to struggle with my purpose and I want to share 3 crucial things that I’ve learned in this really difficult space.
1. Don’t mistake blessings for fulfillment
It’s so easy to see someone with a nice car, big house, and money in the bank and think that they have it all and life must be great. These earthly things are nice and I am not against them, but they are not fulfilling! Wait! What if you have a relationship with God,? You should be completely fulfilled right? I am going to counter that with a question. What if you have a relationship with God and you never did what you were designed to do? OOOOhhh… I think we can all agree that this person would struggle with fulfillment. There’s also the other extreme where people know what they are supposed to do, but they don’t have God. Often times, they struggle with life and choose to take their own lives. Unfortunately we lost two great talents in recent weeks due to suicide, Simone Battle and Robin Williams. What’s outside will never fulfill what’s inside. Inside you have a yearning to make a difference and do something great before you leave this earth. One of the wisest men to ever have lived said several times that we should enjoy the work of our hands and he concluded his book with“Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.” I take from that, that we must have a love and reverence for God and in addition, obey God by doing what we are created to do.
2. Your Gift is Not For You!
There are many who don’t know their gifts or purpose and on the contrary there are many people who know their purpose, but have not learned an important key. Imagine Michael Jordan playing basketball by himself in the confinement of his home and never allowing any of us to watch him play. What if Mozart kept all his music locked up in his basement, or if Michael Angelo created masterpieces and destroyed them before anyone could see them. The world would have been robbed if these gifts were not shared. My good friend Cortney Westbrook shared a revelation with me recently that blew my mind. He said, that “we are trees and trees cannot eat their own fruit, and in addition if no one eats the fruit from the tree, the fruits perish and die.” We are each called to bear fruit, but our gifts and talents are not for us. In the weeks that I’ve struggled with my purpose, I’ve found that the reason why I struggled so much was that I was not using the gift God gave me (which is a the gift of encouragement) for others. Instead, I got into my little bubble and tried to stay encouraged without encouraging. This is the quickest way to self-destruct. Your gift is a gift and it has to be given! I haven’t written an article for Being Encouraged for over three months and I found that my lack of encouragement and lack of writing not only discouraged our audience, but also discouraged me. I need to use my gift just as much as someone needs to receive my gift, and it is the same for you!
3. Solve your problems by solving others’ problems
As I was journaling to God this week, He dropped this jewel in my lap and I knew I had to share it with others. Essentially he said, “Every solution to your problem is in solving the problem of another.” Lets break it down, if you want love you have to give love. If you want friends, you‘ve got to be friendly. You want money; you’ve got to give money or value. You have the job you have right now because you are an answer to a problem and therefore get paid for the solution. When you understand this simple concept, it will help you realize your purpose is not to solve your problems or issues in life. Instead, you should solve the problems of another and your problems will get solved. When we become selfish and focus on ourselves, we actually prevent a successful outcome. The key is to find the problems others have and solve them. Take inventory of the problems around you and find one that you are qualified to solve. This is a clue to your purpose and will always pull you out of the pit.
Please feel free to share any other aspects on purpose that I missed.I would love to hear from you!