Finding Purpose

People throughout the world are unequal in many respects, but there is one thing we all have in common.  We all have a 24 hour day.  While it is true that most people who are employed and have family responsibilities have little choice as to how to spend their time, many who are retired or are handicapped in some way, perhaps through illness, have more choices as to how to spend their time.  The pandemic has limited choices to a great extent, resulting in various extremes of boredom.  We were motivated to write this because of the people we have met who have told us that they were bored, and by a sermon on purpose in life that we saw on the  Eaglebrook Church website. 

Do we ever stop to evaluate how we spend spare time?  We often busy ourselves thinking of ways to entertain ourselves, todays electronic devices offering a variety of options.  Is there ever a feeling that perhaps there is something missing or that God may have a deeper meaning or purpose for our life that we are missing?  

As we consider Eph. 4:10 “For we are His (God’s) workmanship, created in Christs Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them”, we are assured that God does have a special purpose for us.  There can be many things that can distract us from God’s purpose and in fact Paul sees the need to pray for the church in Colossae “That God fill you with the knowledge of His will, with all wisdom and understanding that His Spirit gives, that you will be able to live as the Lord wants and will always do what pleases Him.  Your lives will produce all kinds of good deeds, and you will grow in your knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:9-10). So we too can pray for God to show us His will for our time.

 We can also look for Biblical examples.  “For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own time, fell asleep and was buried with his ancestors” Acts 13:36. David was faithful both as a shepherd, while serving King Saul, and then as a king himself. Daniel was faithful to God as an exile in Babylon and again as a supervisor of governors, even at risk of his life.  {Daniel 1:8, 6:10}  God has a purpose for us wherever we are today.

Here are some questions we can ask ourselves to discover our purpose:, taken from the sermon we heard: (here’s the sermon)

I.   What makes us cry – breaks our heart?

          a.A life without a personal relationship with Christ

          b. Someone with an addiction

          c. Children who are hurting, in an abusive home, bullied, hungry

          d. The homeless, refuges      

          e. Erosion of truth

          f. Environmental issues

II.   What makes our heart beat faster?

          a.Seeing Christ transform someone’s life

          b. Opportunity to be an ambassador for Christ

III.   What am I good at?

          a.Using my energy, time, talent, gift, to serve others

          b. Reaching out in love to someone 

          c. Encourage someone

Ask God to show us how He can enable us to meet needs that are all around us today.  It may be through prayer, a physical act, a financial donation, etc.

Because it would be a tragedy to miss God’s plan we can ask ourselves what things might distract us from recognizing or fulfilling God’s purpose for our life. Could it be things like an unhealthy focus on bitterness, self-pity, worry, and political issues instead of a focus on God’s promises to fill us with His love for others and His peace.

One purpose we know God has given each of us is to pray. We can do this even if we are home-bound. .We are encouraged to come into His presence with praise and thanksgiving (Psalm 100:4). Paul writes, “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness” (1 Timothy 2:1-2).

An organized approach that we use for intercessory prayer is to make lists of categories of people, organizations, and areas of the world. Every day we pray for one item on each list. It is a special joy when people we don’t often think of turn up on the list so we can pray for them. Here are some of the lists we use:  Family names, friends over the years, local and national governmental officials, countries or world areas, our church and other Christian organizations,  missionaries, enemies, and ongoing problems in the lives of individuals  and in the world.  Besides that, each day we pray for current urgent needs and items from our church prayer chain.

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