Summary: The year was 1941. Tens of thousands of Jews were laboring and dying in Nazi concentration camps. The Jews struggled every day to find some kind of purpose in all of what was going on.
“Living on Purpose”
The year was 1941. World War II was in progress. Tens of thousands of Jews were laboring and dying in Nazi concentration camps. To be exact, 6 million had died and another 11 million died during the war. The Jews struggled every day to find some kind of purpose in all of what was going on. Many were shot; many died in gas chambers-all of them lived in fear of losing their lives every single day.
One group of Jewish men were assigned to carry stones from one end of the road to the other. They heard a rumor that the stones were part of a project to build a road. Finally they started to feel some purpose in life; some purpose in what they were doing. Day after day they hauled stones; their bodies aching. The work was extremely difficult. It was more than difficult. It was hard to find a word to describe how unbearable their situation was. But day after day they carried heavy stones, piled them all in a huge pile and they went to sleep that night with some sense of accomplishment-thinking they were going to build something….a road, a building, something that would offer them some purpose in what they were doing.
Then the next day they were ordered into the yard as usual. Their new assignment now was to carry those same stones-ones they had picked up and carried to one side of the camp-new assignment now was to carry those same stones back to where they started. So it became that there was no purpose or meaning whatsoever in what they were doing. It was all absolutely meaningless. As a result, many of them died shortly after that. Because they simply gave up.
There is something inside of us that causes us to want to believe that life is not pointless and that we matter. When we lose our sense of purpose everything changes. All of us need purpose. There are several words or phrases I could use that depending on the generation you grew up in, you would understand exactly what I mean.
Here are a few...
• I am trying to find myself
• I want to find my destiny
• I want to know my calling
• I want to discover my purpose
For me, these are just four simple ways of saying the same thing. Now I want you to bear with me for a moment-and I want to ask you right now to close your eyes and bow your heads and listen to what God has to say….
• So God created human beings in His own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Gen. 1:27
• The purpose in a man's heart is like deep water,
but a man of understanding will draw it out. Proverbs 20:5
• For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. .Jeremiah 29:11
• For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10
• God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. Ephesians 1:5 NLT
• For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. Psalm 139:13 NIV
• “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5 NLT
• People can make all kinds of plans, Proverbs 19:21. But only the Lord’s plan will happen.
So I want to ask and answer three questions this morning. Question number one. Does God have a purpose for everyone?
Question number two. If he does, does God want me to know what it is?
Question number three Is it possible to go all the way through life and not understand my purpose?
Well the answer to all three questions is yes, absolutely. Yes, God has a purpose for you! Yes, He wants you to know exactly what it is and yes, it is possible to go completely through life and miss your purpose... Calling... This destiny. In fact many people miss it completely. So let me begin by giving you three truths you need to understand
1. First of all, you were made in God’s image. On the first day God created life and said, this is good. Second day-he created the sky and said, this is good. This continues for three more days as he created the universe we live in and each day he paused and looked at his creation and said this is good. Then on the sixth day the final day of creation, He then created man in his image... He says this is very good. We believe that this is the first reference in Scripture the holy Trinity. Father. Son. Holy Spirit. All present from the start. And when he looks at what he has created, he doesn’t say it is good; he says it is very good. In other words this is his best work.