Summary: First in a series of "Purpose-Driven" messages. This one talks about why we are here; our purpose; and our ultimate value as Christians.
All of us have questions about why we exist. I think the two most asked questions about our lives are:
a) The question of reason - "Why am I here?"
b) The question of value - "Do I really matter?"
Now, if you go around asking different people these questions, you will get many different answers. In answer to these questions, Oprah Winfrey said, "You’ve got to figure it out by yourself." The Materialist says, "Life is all about the acquisition of things." Those who are into all of the self-help nonsense would say, "You’ve got to create your own purpose in life."
Carl Yung, the famous psychiatrist said, "I don’t know the meaning of life or the purpose of life, but it looks as if something were meant by it."
Joseph Taylor wrote a book entitled "I Have No Answers to the Meaning of Life - And I No Longer Want to Search for Any." That tells us two things about Mr. Taylor. One, he is honestly ignorant, and two, he doesn’t care who knows it.
We could go on and on, but these statements show that there are many people who truly see no purpose at all in their lives. And, without any purpose to your life, you have no direction. Having no direction to our lives renders us absolutely useless.
An old farmer and his wife always went to the county fair. And, every year they saw the same pilot offering to take people up for a spin in his airplane for $10.00 a ride.
Every year, the old farmer asked his wife to give him $10.00 so he could go up. Every year, the wife responded by getting very mad at him and saying that ten dollars was ten dollars and they couldn’t afford to be so frivolous with what little money they had.
He told her that he was now 80 years old and if he didn’t go up this year, he never would. In a very angry voice, she repeated that ten dollars was ten dollars. At this point they got into an argument about it.
The pilot overheard them and offered to make them a deal. He would take them both up for free providing he didn’t hear one word from either one of them during the entire trip. If either of them said anything at all, they would have to pay him the $10.00. They agreed.
The pilot put them in, took off and during the course of the next 15 minutes put that plane through every maneuver known to man, including flips, rolls, and nosedives. And he didn’t so much as hear a sound from them.
When they landed, he congratulated the farmer on not making any noise, and asked him how come they never said anything during all the maneuvers. The farmer said, “Well, I was going to say something when my wife fell out, but like she always told me, ‘Ten dollars is ten dollars!"
Well, at least they both knew the value of ten dollars, didn’t they?
Being a success in life and knowing your purpose in life is NOT the same thing. You can be a raving success in life and still never know your purpose. As an example of that, look at Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke. Both men were brilliant men of science who also wrote science fiction novels. Both of them said they saw no purpose at all in why we are here, other than pure happenstance.