Summary: With God center in our lives, seeking to conform ourselves to the image of His Son, seeking to serve His will as Christ’s Ambassadors we will fulfill His purpose for our lives.
God’s Purpose For Our Life
Reading: Luke 4:16-21
How would you describe your life if you were to use just one word? Frantic? Fatigued? Frustrating? Maybe some of us would say Fun? Fulfilling? I wonder if any of us might use the word "Focused?" Focused is a word we can apply to the life of Jesus. [reading]
Jesus knew what His purpose in life was even from a young age (Luke 2:49). If you study His life closely, you will discover that His entire life was pointed toward the fulfillment of what God put Him on earth to do. Can we say that about our lives?
Many here are old enough to remember the Ed Sullivan Show; for those of you who do not, the Ed Sullivan Show was a variety show which was on every Sunday night at 8 P.M. for years. One of the acts I remember was a kind of juggling act. There was a man who balanced dinner plates on some long flimsy poles by spinning them one by one. With frantic music playing, his goal was to get as many plates spinning at one time as possible without allowing a single plate falling. After many attempts and by constantly moving from plate to plate, the performer would finally get all of the plates spinning at one time.
Can you relate to the picture of that performer? He and a lot of us here have some things in common. A lot of us find ourselves trying to keep a lot of things spinning at one time: job, family, marriage, social life, church, school, extra-curricular activities, sports; the list can go on and on. It is very difficult to keep all of those plates spinning at one time. We can become so involved in the different activities of our lives that we lose the focus of what our purpose in life really is.
You can have good values, know that you have been gifted and still miss out on God’s intended purpose for your life if you do not keep your focus on that purpose. Many of us go through life without that focus. We are easily sidetracked and find ourselves spinning plate after plate, trying to keep them all spinning. How do we get our life focused? How do you get it on track and keep it there? You begin by understanding our life purpose.
I.What Is A Life Purpose?
Before we can examine our life purpose, we must understand exactly what we mean by this.
If I were to ask you what your purpose in life is, some of you would answer: "To retire." Others might say, "To make a lot of money," while still others might say, "To get married and have a lot of children." All of those things are good, but they do not represent our life purpose. They are goals you have. So often we confuse our goals with our purpose. It is very important that we understand that our goals are not the same as our purpose in life. The purpose of our life may and should help shape our goals.
Our purpose will also clarify our roles in life. We all wear many hats as we journey through life. Each season of our life calls upon us to take on a new role. We are children, partners, parents and grandparents. We go from one stage to another, each time redefining our roles as we go. These roles are part of our purpose.
We also will find that our career roles are a part of God’s purpose for us. Often, we think that our life’s purpose is our career but that is not the case. Ideally, our life’s purpose includes our careers, but we must realize that our purpose in life is much greater than our careers. We can lose our job and still have a purpose for our living. One word of caution, we can sometimes get so caught up in our careers that we lose focus on what our purpose is.
You and I share the same purpose in life but this purpose will be uniquely fulfilled by you. Your fulfillment of this purpose will involve your spiritual gifts, your heart, your abilities, your personality and your experiences.
Your fulfillment of this purpose will allow you to touch people who no one else can touch. God has placed all of us on this earth for this purpose. When we come to the end of our days here on earth, hopefully we will have achieved His purpose for our lives and we will hear those precious words: “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
II.How Do I Know My Purpose In Life?
You may be thinking, "Obviously understanding one’s life purpose is important, but how can I know my life’s purpose?" I am glad you asked that.