It’s my birthday today, and I welcome another year. In the same breath, I can’t believe I’ve lived this many years! However, I’m grateful for health and blessings, and another year of life living and learning.
(My mom and me)
It reminds me that to live life on purpose, or better yet, living “in-purpose” makes each year more interesting and meaningful than the last. To have purpose is the reason for which someone exists, isn’t it?
It doesn’t mean we need to be rich and famous. I feel, more often, purpose is found in the seemingly simple and ordinary. It is within our quiet inner selves, resting in the deepest part of our soul, ready and waiting. Enthusiasm, enjoyment, and satisfaction are living evidence that we are “in-purpose.”
Today, I got burgers and fries (not so healthy) and ate with my mom in her little studio apartment, sharing my birthday cards, spending quiet, stree-free time together. It’s memorable to me, for whatever reason; it’s so simple, maybe that’s why. I’m sitting in her chair, legs on her ottoman, tapping away on my laptop, writing this to you while she naps. Time with my mom, and writing, is exactly where I’m supposed to be on my birthday; a gift to her, a gift to me. I feel that I am “in-purpose.”
I look not only at myself and my age, but my mom, and I realize life passes by quickly. I want to make the most of it. How about you? I know you do, too!
Whatever season of life we find ourselves, let’s live life “in purpose.” It is at the core of our being, one of our greatest human desires. With adrenalin pumping, sometimes we feel our purpose is right at the forefront, glaringly real. At other times it feels living out life in meaningful purpose is difficult, stuck, and unmoving.
I believe my purpose and your purpose is constant and growing. It’s the circumstances around us that change, delay, or get us moving in the right way … toward living on purpose, “in-purpose.”
Living “in-purpose” is driven by two main factors. First, the in-born spiritual gifting God gives to be uniquely used … and constantly applied in life goals and planned situations. Also, if you stop to notice, spiritual gifting also surfaces in the unplanned situations, hurtful relationships, or unwelcome events.
Your spiritual gifting, which flows from you “in-purpose,” comes so naturally to you that it may not seem special; you may not realize it is a God-given gift; for example: love, service, teaching, encouragement, wisdom, patience, kindness, generosity, faith, hope, and many more. Your gifting, your purpose, when used a little or a lot, is valuable to those you touch and influence.
What gift rings true for you? This exercise may help you appreciate your inborn gifting. Read each verse of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, slowly. Who is the first person, or what life event, difficulty, or circumstance comes to mind? How does your spiritual gifting benefit a situation, encourage others, or give meaning to your day. Who are you in God’s eyes? Discover your spiritual gifting, develop, and use it … and thank God for it. The world is a better place because of it, and because of you!
I feel the second driving force to living life on purpose, “in-purpose,” is to maximize your secular skills, world experience, abilities, education. Opportunities and application branch out from there.
And with God, you get to choose how best to use! The combination of spiritual gifting and world taught secular skills, life lived “in-purpose,” is a trip of a lifetime, literally! And don’t stop there. It’s just beginning…
“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone.”
1 Corinthians 12:4-6 (NRSV)