I had lunch with Lauren this week. She always, always, gives me depth. Probably, because she is so deep in the word that you have to dive in head first to find her heart. I love that about her. I love being around people like that. What was incredible though, is that we were both stuck on this concept of being chosen by God before the beginning of time. Weird, since we hadn't chatted for some time before getting together. We just chalk it up to our Dad in heaven connecting our hearts. He's so cool.
Never in my life have I not had a plan, a dream, a goal, a direction, a purpose and a drive to succeed. I have always had my direction all figured out and knew exactly the path I was to take and most definitely, where it was leading me.
And now, I don't. I don't mean in my career, but in a bigger picture sense. What am I doing all this for? Who am I doing all this for?
Some might say that not knowing is exciting. A blank slate, a clean start to create anything I want my life to be. But to a girl who has always prided herself on being in control, totally put together, who knew the answers before the questions were asked, who was completely focused - it's a seriously scary place to be. The drive seems directionless. The push seems purposeless. And the dream is filled with discontent.
"Leave your impoverished confusion and live! Walk up the street to a life with meaning."
Proverbs 9:6 (Msg)
Meaning? Well, what is my meaning? How do I create a life of it? And who cares anyway?
This is what I am certain of. I do not create a meaningful life by acquiring more stuff, climbing the corporate ladder or having a rock solid retirement plan if all of it is devoid of knowing my true purpose.
Ok. But I am uncertain of my true purpose. Well, here it is.
I was made by God and I was made for God. I was put here for His purposes. Life will never make sense until I understand that truth. God hasn't made anything that doesn't have a purpose. That includes me.
"For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and
blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be his."
Ephesians 1:4 (NIV)
What a wonderful verse.
If you are a believer, YOU were chosen by the most powerful force in the universe before He ever created the world.
He made YOU so He could love YOU.
Read that again. Get that. Read it again. It's HUGE. That. is. your. purpose.
You were made to be loved by God.
You were created to be loved by God.
That is the reason that you are on this earth.
You were created to be loved by God. God is love.
God created YOU.
He didn't need you.
He wasn't lonely.
He wasn't desperate.
He simply wanted to love you.
So if I know that truth and if I truly get that truth, why am I so hung up on my purpose, my goals, my direction, my drive and desires and wants? Because I don't know God deep enough.
“For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible…everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.”
Colossians 1:16 (Msg)
“It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for... part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.”
Ephesians 1:11 (Msg)
The more you get to know God, the more you will understand his ways and gain the knowledge, the wisdom, and insight of the purpose of your life. And on another level, the reason why you may be discontented. I so desperately want to use the gifts and talents he blessed me with to please him but yet - if I go back to the main purpose of my life - I was made to be loved by God - I never have to accomplish a thing because his love is not based on conditions of my accomplishment.
God is far more interested in what you are than in what you do. God is always far more interested in who you are in your character than he is in what you do for a living. Why? Because you are not going to take your career with you to heaven. You are not taking your wealth to heaven. You are not taking your relationships to heaven.
The purpose of your career choice on earth is to develop your character. The purpose of relationships is to make you holier, not happier. The purpose of your wealth is not about your comfort, but what character you display with money. You are going to take your character with you to heaven.
Life is not about career choices, or car choices or clothes choices or comfort choices or cash choices. If all you are living for is to make sure you have retirement taken care or that you become CEO by age 50 then you are short-sighted. Life is a dress rehearsal - we are being auditioned in this life by God. How well we choose
here determines if we live with Him afterwards. He isn't going to ask us then "May I see your profit & loss statement" The only P&L He is interested in is "People & Love" and He will want to know how deeply we loved and how many did we help.
Life here is about building character in Jesus Christ and until we understand this, life is not going to make sense. All kinds of problems are going to come into our life. We are going to struggle financially and emotionally and physically and spiritually, but they are not empty struggles. They are purposeful. Comfort is not the goal; character building is the goal - in the image of Jesus.
God wants to spend eternity with us, but if we mess up the audition here on earth, there are no call backs. I pray, my heart longs, my being aches for us all to be celebrating together at the after party.
How can I help you get there?