11/11 is Veterans Day, a day that honors military veterans, those who served in the United States Armed Forces. Today, I pay respect to all our veterans for their service. I acknowledge their contributions to our national security and I commend the great amount of dedication it takes each of them to serve. God bless them, their families, and I pray those currently abroad come home safely! It takes total understanding of their purpose for them to deliver at the war front, I hope to emulate that purpose.
The second part of Chapter 3 highlights 5 benefits of knowing your purpose:
Gives Meaning to Your Life: Without God, life has no purpose. Without purpose, life has no meaning. Without meaning, life has no significance or hope. In Isaiah 49:4a, Isaiah complained, “But my work seems so useless! I have spent my strength for nothing and to no purpose!” If you’ve ever worked hard on a paper, then at the last minute your computer crashes without a backup for your work, you can relate very well to this. As Rick stated, the greatest tragedy is not death, but life without purpose.
Hope is also essential in life. We need a great deal of hope to cope! Sometimes, even after identifying your purpose, it could take a while to come to life, which could be tough to handle, but let’s remember God’s promise in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know what I have planned for you,’ says the LORD. ‘I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you a future filled with hope.”
Simplifies Your Life: When your purpose is crystal clear, it becomes the standard you use to evaluate which activities are essential, and which aren’t. I now understand that when I’ve found myself doing too much, and complaining to God, “why did you just give us 24 hours in a day?” that could have been a result of not knowing my purpose. This constantly “too busy” lifestyle can lead to stress, conflict, and even depression. Remembers, it’s impossible to do everything everyone wants of us. Saying no is an important skill to learn! Proverbs 13:7 stresses this point. “A pretentious, showy life is an empty life; a plain and simple life is a full life.” Isaiah 26:3 says, “You, Lord, give perfect peace to those who keep their purpose firm, and put their trust in you.”
Focuses Your Life: A life of purpose requires concentration and effectiveness, which we can achieve by being highly selective. Change is good! Most of us like to preach that, but there are invaluable able takeaways from consistency. If you find yourself always changing churches, jobs, friends, religion, spouses or boy/girl friends, you need to come on this journey with me! Ephesian 5:17 tells us, “Don’t live carelessly, unthinkingly. Make sure you understand what the Master wants.” We understand this by asking Him, or through his word, which is a good footprint. If you want your life to have impact, it has to be focused! Enough dabbling in all quick money fads, this hobby, that business, that job, etc. When you spend five years being a jack-of-all-trades, you will realize that it’d have been more profitable if you focused on one or two of those trades
Motivates Your Life: Purpose produces passion, which we need to be energized. Whenever I have a morning flight (although I have missed a few – shame shame, I know), I wake up, and know what I need to do to get to the airport in good time (P.S good time for me means enough time to run through the airport like a headless chicken in order to board. I need help people!). When I have school, which God knows I’m not exactly passionate about, I struggle to get out of bed. We can use the same analogy for purpose. Great purpose pushes us to ‘do’, while no purpose makes us lazy.
Prepares You for Eternity: Many people want to be remembered when they’re gone, so they spend their lives creating a lasting legacy. A good name is good, and even a great intangible inheritance for your generations. I know I will treat Mary Slessor’s great-grand children with maybe an equal amount of respect I’d have treated Mary Slessor with. But, we have to remember that the most important thing is what God has to say. Romans 14:12 reminds us that, “each of us will give an account of himself to God (on the day of judgment, after death).”
Rick explains that two questions will be asked of us:
– What did you do with my son, Jesus Christ? Your religious background would not matter. But in your heart, did you accept Jesus as your Lord?
This question determines where you spend eternity.
– What did you do with what I gave you? It took me a while before I realized that communicating was my talent – through talking, writing, acting, etc. Once I realized it, I had to figure a way to return the glory to God. Yes, sometimes I use my talents for pure comedy, but God searches the heart, and I’m happy to say my ultimate goal is to use His gifts upon my life to please Him.
This question determines what you will do eternity.
This book helps us uncover these 2 questions. I’m excited to discover it!
Food for Thought: What would my close friends and family say is the driving factor of my life? What do I want it to be?