Are You Living Your Life on Purpose?
The Bible tells us, in Ecclesiastes 2:1-8 (KJV), that “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. God has a preordained time for all the stages and phases of our journey on earth. By His divine providence, God governs His creations. He has pre-ordered things and set particular times for them to occur as we live our lives. In the appointed times, things may be done with success; but if we neglect or do not observe the appointed seasons for fulfilling His purpose for our lives, I believe that's when/how we can become the creators of many of our own troubles and difficulties.
Do you believe that you were put here for a particular purpose, or do you attribute your being here to random coincidence? Do you ever think about what your purpose on Earth actually is, or are you someone who has already discovered why/how God wants you to use your life on Earth?
The Process of Self-Inventory
A great philosopher once said, "The unexamined life is not worth living," and I agree. I believe it is not simply important; it is vital to examine your life, purposefully. It is the only way to be sure that your living, every day, is connected to God, and that you are living while appreciating your life as one of God’s greatest and most meaningful creations. Everyone—no matter his or her station in life, I believe can benefit from self-inventory. It can help anyone discover the truth about her, and the truth will lead you or anyone to a clearer understanding God’s purpose for your life.
Some people never feel comfortable in their own skin, no matter how many material things they are able to shore up around them. I believe the reason for this could be they have not sought and found and connected with the purpose God has for their life. I believe that when anyone opens his or her mind and heart to the truth that God planned purpose into each of our lives, that anyone can live life more purposefully, and find true happiness.
Since God already loves and appreciates each one of us, I feel it is our job to learn to love and appreciate self and other human beings as being among God’s greatest creations. How can anyone not realize how important his or her life is, once they understand they are one of God’s greatest creations? God loves each of us more than any of us could ever imagine, and He has given each and every one of us everything we need to fulfill His purpose for our lives. In fact, I believe if you aren’t connected with the purpose He has for you as you are living the part of your life you’re now living, it could be that you are the only thing standing in the way. It could be that by not examining and questioning what you need to examine and question, that you are keeping you from discovering how God wants to use your life for a greater purpose.
Time, Place, Purpose
God gives us not just this thing that we call “time,” He also gives us a placement within time and within His nature, among other people and as we coexist with everything—plant and animal—and all things that are in operation in the universe, to fulfill the purpose He intends us to fulfill. To animals He gave instinct, and by their instincts they fulfill their reasons for being. To nature, he assigned laws, laws it can only obey. But to mankind he gave a mind—an intellect that allows us, through free will, to do with our lives what we want. We are free to do as we please, so to speak, and that means we are free to fulfill or not God’s purpose for our lives. With that being the case, many people spend their entire lives devoting their time and placement on Earth to pursuits having little or nothing to do with God’s purpose.
When you are completing a God-given purpose or assignment, you know, because in that time/place, you realize you are finding your greatest joy. You're finding your greatest passion, and because of that you're finding it to be effortless for you to passionately pursue your life. At that time, you have found where you belong; your value as a being is evident; your genius, apparent. You're in a place where you can bloom and prosper spiritually, physically, and financially, because you’ve found where your gifts “fit” and are needed.
A Little "Nudge" is All it Takes
At different times in my life I have to question, in my mind, what God’s purpose is for my life. It’s not something that I think of constantly, but it is a question that, if I don't address it consciously, will begin to sort of “nudge” me subconsciously until I devote quality time to actually thinking about it. I believe it happens when I’m ready to reconnect with God’s purpose for my life at different stages of my life. And, since I want more fulfillment from life than would be possible for me by simply drifting through life aimlessly with no sense of purpose, or from existing inside a life that just “happens,” I pay attention to and I heed the nudge. I take time out to truly examine my life, to do my own inventory of where I am and where I might be headed when it comes to my own purpose under the heaven.
Through prayer and introspection, through connecting with God, I believe I learn what I need to know at different times in my life, to discover my purpose for that time. Although an internal nudge, a feeling, is what I get, I think the nudge can probably take a variety of formats. I believe it can be a feeling, a longing, a realization, or even an occurrence that shows you it's time, in your life, for a purpose-related change.
Reconnect With Your Purpose, Today
I hope you’ve already realized that your ultimate purpose in life has been given to you by God, by way of Holy Scripture. The Bible is God's "How To" manual. It contains everything any of us need to know to live a purposeful, purpose-filled life on earth. There is no need to fill up life with empty, meaningless activities. You don't have to just "kill time" until it’s your time to leave the earth. Your reasons for being, and my reasons for being, are wonderful reasons. If you are a Christian, you know you are here on Earth to seek and find a way for you to contribute to the fulfillment of God's purpose. You are here to become a disciple (a student) of Jesus Christ. You are here to learn to obey Jesus' teachings. You are here to share the love of the Lord with everyone that you can. You are here to exemplify the meaning of love, caring, and concern for self and others.
I hope that by reading this article you’ve become motivated or inspired by something in it. It is my prayer that you will read the Bible in an effort to discover and to crystallize your God-given purpose for being alive, right now, as you journey through the seasons of your life. Allow the word of God to lead you in examining and re-examining why you are here now. And do this from time to time, to seek and to connect with God’s great purpose for your life.
I believe God has assigned a purpose to each person, a reason for being alive and living on planet earth. It is the act of seeking and discovering purpose that makes living your life more rewarding, and worldly activities more satisfying. When you know you are connected to God and that your purpose for being is also connected to Him, you can live, lit up for God, and on purpose. And, even though purpose can and does change as you live and grow and age, isn't it good to know that you were born with a purpose, and that you live for a purpose? Isn't it great to know there are is a divine reason, a divine purpose for you to be alive?
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© 2012 Sallie B Middlebrook PhD