Purpose, Joy, and Satisfaction. At the end of the day, isn’t that what we want to see produced in our lives through what we do and who we spend our time with?
I’ve thought about this ever since I could remember. As I was growing up, I can see that I attempted to try to find something, or someone, that was going to give me purpose, real joy, or satisfaction. My career choices ranged from becoming a Canadian Mountie (cops on horses… don’t ask) to being an astronaut, all the while searching for Mr. Right. These were the things I assumed would bring me purpose, joy, and satisfaction in life. However, looking deeper I realized that these things would not fulfill my desires: A job would simply be something I do, money would be something I temporarily have, a man’s brokenness together with my own brokenness would not bring fulfillment, but only more brokenness. Excuse my dreariness, but at the end of the day it all kind of seemed well… pointless.
In my 11th-12th grade years of high school I was really feeling this sense of pointlessness and I found myself asking questions like,
“What does my life actually amount to?”
“Why do I have these desires if they are impossible to obtain?”
Then, God broke onto the scene. I had been a “Christian” my whole life, but believing in Jesus didn’t make much sense to me beyond the avoidance of hell. Suddenly, the God of all creation gave me purpose by telling me that He loved me and that He had a plan for my life. A few years ago, He asked me to let go of my path to college and go do something called a Discipleship Training School (DTS) in Montana for 5 months. I’ve been in Montana ever since and I’d like to share why.
I developed a relationship with Jesus and what I have discovered is that the desires I had (for a dream job, the dream guy, and the dream life) have been fulfilled in my relationship with Jesus. I now know that my purpose is to love Him and to love others, because He first loved me. I have experienced actual joy in the midst of circumstances that should only have made me hopeless, and it’s because His character is unchanging and His promises do not fail. He has become my satisfaction as I’ve come to realize that what my heart truly desired is actually Jesus. He fulfills it all. He is the only way, the only truth and the only life (John 14:6).
So what am I doing with my life?
Whatever He asks me to do. If the reason why I wanted to pursue those things in the past is already completely fulfilled in Jesus, then I have freedom to go wherever He is leading me without a fear of losing Him (who is my fulfillment).
I mess up and look to other things to fulfill me, but He faithfully brings me back to a place of remembering that it is only in Him that I am fulfilled and made whole.
I am not perfect, so I’m still learning how Jesus is my fulfillment. I mess up and look to other things to make me happy, but He faithfully brings me back to a place of remembering that it is only in Him that I am fulfilled and made whole. This is an ongoing process, but the more I look to Jesus the more I stop looking to other things. Now, whatever I do with my life, whether I someday pursue a career, get married, or live in the middle of a jungle giving the gospel to an unreached tribe, it will be centered around Christ, because He is where true fulfillment comes from.
So I want to challenge you to think about this:
Do you see Jesus as your fulfillment and purpose for what you do with your life?
Or are you trying to make what you do give you your purpose, joy, and satisfaction?