5 Sure Signs that You Have Forgotten Your Purpose

What happens to a tool or a piece of equipment when we no longer use it for its intended purpose?It begins to rust and decay. Or if we use the tool in a way contrary to its created purpose, we end up damaging it, sometimes beyond repair. However, when we keep using that tool or equipment the way the creator or manufacturer intended, it remains useful for many years.

Our lives have an intended purpose just like a manufactured tool. A Creator made us with a purpose in mind, and when we don’t fulfill that purpose, we too, just like a tool, become useless over time. Of course we don’t rust, but I guess decay is inevitable for us all. We can become damaged though if we don’t adhere to our original design and purpose. Here are 5 things that happen to me when I forget my purpose or mission:

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5 Ways Having A Purpose Gives You Confidence

Do you ever feel like you are aimlessly wandering through life? Do you struggle making decisions, both big and small? Odds are you do. A lot of people do.

I introduce my podcast episodes stating that everyone has a God-given mission or purpose. I really do believe that. Every single person created, whether they believe in God or not, has a purpose for being on this planet. It is a lie from the enemy of God that some people don’t have a reason for being alive.

So why is it so hard for us to know what that purpose or mission is?

The thing I learned about God is that He rarely forces His plan on us. Unless your name is Jonah getting swallowed by a giant fish, or Saul/Paul falling down blind on the road to Damascus, God patiently works with us, nudging us, sometimes waiting for us to be ready for His plan for our lives.

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His Hands. His Feet.

Sent to the fatherless, the brokenhearted, and those far from Him

You not only notice the person standing on the street corner holding a sign asking for help, you have compassion for them. You are the person who brings the child of another person into your home and treats them as if they were your own flesh and blood. You use your resources, like time and money, to invest in people who are in need.

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You engage with people who are hurting and broken knowing that it is going to get messy. You are the one who uses your vacation time to travel to places so you can share Jesus with people who might otherwise never hear about Him.

Even though you are that person, you don’t always know what to do. Some days you need encouragement. Other times you look for inspiration.

Why do you live life like this?

You understand that you are His ambassadors. He didn’t create you, then redeem you so that you could live your life the way you want. You know you are sent.

You are His Hands. His Feet.

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It Is Easier To Serve God Without A Call

Do you think God calls us to His work? Do you think He has a specific vision for your life? Do you give that thought any consideration or would you rather He just leave you alone?

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If you do want to serve God wouldn’t it be easier to serve Him on your terms?

It is easier to Serve God Without a Call or Vision.

Here is what that would look like:

  • We decide what kind of time and effort we give to God’s work.
  • We choose what we do for God.
  • We use our judgement to guide us to where we should go and how we can be the most useful.

What is wrong with that you ask? Or maybe that just convicted you, because you, like me, recognize that is how we far too often approach our service to God.

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Why I Am Launching a Podcast

I admit, I have tried to take on too much the past several months. From ankle surgery in September to buying a new home in December and moving in January, to getting our former house  ready to rent, to joining a new nonprofit board also in January, no wonder I feel overwhelmed.

Just around the new house I constantly have about five projects going at the same time.

To keep in line with all that, I decided last fall to update my website which I thought I would have released by January. Yeah. Not quite. But I am still working on it along with the following:

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The Secret to a Close-Knit Community of Believers

One thing I notice about church in this generation is that it’s really easy to show up on Sunday, hang out for a couple of hours, then leave without really knowing anyone any more than when you got there. You could really not even talk to anyone.

I guess that’s fine for those who want their “church life” to stay in its place—at church.

But what if you and I seek a close-knit community of fellow believers; a community that knows each other beyond the names of spouses and children. A community that knows what each others dreams, passions, fears, and struggles look like.

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Is Your Need to Fit In Keeping You from Living a Life on Mission?

Most people want to fit in. Most are trend followers, not trend setters. We wear the same clothes, drive similar looking vehicles, even style our hair the same ways…well those who have hair.

Throughout my life I have tried to fit in. I always have. I am also an introvert. I don’t care for attention. I often deflect the attention to the extroverts around me, and I am more than okay with that.

But the more I pursue God’s mission in my life, I find that I “fit in” less and less.

From my experience, if you live out God’s mission for your life—You will be different!

The question is will “not fitting in” keep you from living a life on mission?

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Warning: The Mission God Has for You Might Not Make Sense

When someone gives us a mission, most of us want to understand how everything works out. We want the reasons for the mission.

When it is God that is giving us the mission, I think we are afraid that He is going to ask us to sell all of our possessions, leave our friends and family and move to a remote village in Africa to live in a mud hut. He might, but it’s unlikely.

From personal experience, the mission God has for your life might not make sense. I think you can probably count on it not making sense.

The past 10 years of my life has been one surprise after another as I seek God’s mission for my life.

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You Are Never Too OId to Discover Your Mission in Life

4 Questions to Ask

I laugh when I hear someone who is in their 20s or 30s bemoan missing their opportunity in life. Some seem to think that life is over by the time they reach 40.

If you feel that way either as a young person or someone who is past, God forbid, that 40 year mark, then consider these people and what they accomplished later in life:

Colonel Sanders—62 when he franchised Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Donald and Doris Fisher—Opened the first GAP store when Donald was 40.

Sam Walton—44 when he opened the first Walmart.

Henry Ford—45 when he built the Model T car.

Julia Child—50 when she wrote her first cookbook.

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How Volunteering Can Help You Discover Your Mission

3 Things You Learn about Yourself When You Volunteer

Experience is one of life’s best teachers. As you seek to discover your mission in life, you can read about different opportunities, you can listen to other’s stories, but nothing beats firsthand experience.

Courtesy of Partners in Hope Lake Travis

 

Since a teenager, I have volunteered locally by serving food at a soup kitchen, stocking shelves at a food pantry, helping elderly widows, working on house repairs for less fortunate, helping build a church in Louisiana, and spending time with kids that lived at a children’s shelter.

Short term mission trips also gave me many opportunities to volunteer. I have helped conduct Vacation Bible Schools and build a church in Mexico, help build a school in Guatemala, handed out Bibles to Chinese Tourists in Thailand and Macau, dug a well in Honduras, hung out with more kids in a children shelter in Thailand, visited men, women and children in prisons in Thailand, prayer walked in Chinese villages, and spent time encouraging missionaries on the field.

When you volunteer for different things, especially things that out of your comfort zone, you begin to learn things about yourself that will help you discover your mission in life. Here are a few things that you will help you as you volunteer:

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