What are you waiting for?
If only I knew what to do with myself.
If only I could be sure of my purpose.
If only I could make a difference.
If only I didn’t have obstacles in the way of my potential.
These are plaguing questions of which many can relate. We vacillate between feeling clueless about our purpose or powerless to make it happen.
Thankfully, God knew what we would need to learn in order to make the most of our time on earth. The good news is that our purpose is not contingent on anyone else but ourselves, nor is it hindered in any way by what door of opportunity hasn’t yet opened for us.Thankfully, our purpose is not contingent on anyone else but ourselves, nor is it hindered in any way by what door of opportunity hasn't yet opened for us. Nothing can prevent us from making a difference every day! Click To Tweet
I know it can be discouraging if you feel your purpose is dependent on a certain education, connection, or dream that seems just out of reach. We can feel trapped by our circumstances or the lack of golden opportunity coming our way. The encouragement is that it doesn’t matter one bit if that career promotion or speaking/writing platform, publishing contract or college education is yet to be OUR reality.
The truth is that God has given us each a plan that is well within our ability to achieve, regardless of who we are. We all share this potential and it has nothing to do with what we do for a living. There are many lawyers, nail technicians and stay at home moms that wonder if their daily routines are all that there is to life. We can be left feeling that our “every day” isn’t worth very much compared to others who appear to be getting the bigger breaks in life.
Our “Marching Orders” As Believers
John 15:15-17 NIV clarifies the purpose for each of us, no matter if we are men or women, young or old, blue collar or white collar, rich or poor.
15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.
As I see it, as a disciple of Jesus, I am given a three-fold commission fundamental to my life’s purpose.
- God chose me.
- God appoints me.
- God commands me.
Whether you are a retiree, a lineman, a computer engineer, or a student, this commission enables us to make a difference each and every day. God gives us purpose and our stewardship of these orders is what enables us to make a difference to the world around us. Not one person is limited in the execution of these orders.
Understanding Our Commission
We are important enough to be chosen by God. That in and of itself should make us want to handle our commission with the utmost attention. No one “chosen” is unnecessary. As believers, we are ALL absolutely vital to the kingdom of God!
Next, He appoints us to action. He doesn’t choose us for inactivity or self-fulfillment. This isn’t about us hoarding God’s blessings for our own welfare. We have an assignment, a daily purpose, and that is to go and bear fruit. We are to busy ourselves with going out into the world as Jesus did.
This has two aspects.
First, when we look at His life, He was concerned for others. He tended to their needs- physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional. He served daily. Whether He was walking down the road or by the lakeshore or in the towns, Jesus impacted others by serving them. This was fruit, or proof, that He was from God and doing what God had called Him to do. It was an outward representation of His purpose in life- bearing fruit.
Secondly, there is an inward component of bearing fruit. Whereas the outward component dealt with action by caring for others, the inward part deals with the development of the fruit of the Spirit- maturity in Christlikeness. This two-fold process of bearing fruit is evidenced as we reflect Christ outwardly AND inwardly. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control describe Christ and they should increasingly describe us as well.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; Galatians 5:22-23 ESV
Lastly, after God chooses and appoints, He commands us. The best way we reflect Christ to the world and ensure that we make a difference every single day is to love others. It is the most simple daily assignment we can have as disciples and yet it is the most powerful and profound. When we love one another, we proclaim Christ!When we love one another, we proclaim Christ! Click To Tweet
This command can be achieved if we are sick at home for the day or out doing errands or on the job. It isn’t hindered by being alone or in a crowd of strangers or with coworkers. As we love others, lives are impacted and many of them changed, all to the glory of God.
Living It Out
I think we can overcomplicate the execution of our purpose in life. It isn’t a narrow assignment we have been given but a broad call to action. It can be achieved in many different ways. Each moment impacting the world for Jesus.
For me, this can look different, depending upon the day. As a Bible teacher, I disciple others through speaking, writing, and mentoring. Full-time ministry is what I give most of my time to but in a typical day, it can be achieved through a variety of means.
For instance, I can have plans to study and write online for the day. This entails that I usually post on social media, make graphics for these posts, answer comments from others from previous posts, check my emails, work on a post for my website, have meetings or communication with others for joint ministry work, and like/share or comment on other people’s posts on social media to encourage them and promote the work of Christ.
In the midst of all this going on in a day, I may text or talk with someone to disciple/encourage them. On the other end of the spectrum, I may communicate with those who seek to provoke or upset me. It is still my responsibility to love them by not responding likewise.
I may stop to go have coffee with someone or babysit or pick up someone’s laundry so that their load is lifted. I usually work on my husband’s to-do list by doing errands for him or making necessary business phone calls. My own grocery lists, errands, household chores, as well as support to our adult children are ways I seek to love others by serving them.
On another day …
I may have a speaking engagement or be contributing to someone else’s publication or serving at my church or hosting friends as they come to visit. It can either be through plans for my day or interruptions to them, loving others is the agenda.
I have had seasons of being a stay at home mom, working part-time, and working full time. Regardless, the opportunities for making a difference are equal.
Whether it is a face to face contact, prayer, online communication, or through my phone, I have plenty of ways every day to make a difference in the lives of those around me. I may never leave our apartment in a single day but I am no more hindered in impacting others for the sake of Christ. Even if I never get the book deal or the platform of my dreams, I can still make a difference where God has me and so can you!
The Hope of our Calling
The thrill of this life is that nothing can hinder our potential at loving others! Therefore, we cannot be thwarted from making a difference EVERY day! In our homes, our offices, our commutes, our churches, our communities……… let’s be Jesus to those near and far. We are CHOSEN, APPOINTED AND COMMANDED so let’s make the most of every moment!