In our second Men’s Fraternity meeting, Pastor Brian challenged each of us to develop a life purpose statement for ourselves and also to choose a life verse from the bible. In our third meeting a couple of days ago Brian asked us if anyone had done that yet. I don’t think anybody raised his hand. Then he asked us if anyone had no idea where to even start in developing a purpose statement. A few of us, including myself, raised our hands. Brian said he suspected that might be the case so he told us he had some handouts for us that might help us with and that we could pick one up after the meeting if we wanted. So on my way out that day I picked one up.
Now, in case you’re not familiar with what a life purpose statement is, as I was not, it is basically a statement that tells people who you are and what you are all about. Businesses always have one but they call it a mission statement. For instance, a mission statement for the United States Post Office might be something like “We will deliver letters and parcels to our customers in a friendly and timely manner.” Nothing in-depth really, just something for them to shoot for as a business; a target to keep their eye on.
Okay, so I took the handout and headed on up to work. I had almost an hour to kill so I just sat in my truck and began reading the handout, ”Finding Your Purpose: How to Know Why You Are Here” by Regi Campbell. In it, Mr. Campbell shares the process by which he came up with his own personal statement and I found it to be very helpful in developing my own.
Most helpful of all was the section in which Regi says to pinpoint your strengths, the things that you are particularly good at, and think about how you can use those things to glorify God. I began to really think about that and I came up with a few things that I can do well. God blessed me with a healthy body and the willingness to work hard when the situation calls for it, and He also gave me a positive mental attitude, and He gave me a good memory. So I began forming my purpose statement around that and came up with this:
I will glorify God by working hard at whatever task He gives me while maintaining a positive attitude and I will remember to give Him the glory in all things.
As Regi Campbell says in his short book, this statement will probably changed and evolve over time but I think it’s a pretty good starting point.
Now, Pastor Brian also encouraged us to choose a life verse from the Bible. A few verses came to mind, verses that have helped me through some difficult times, most especially when I was blind. One was Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Another was Isaiah 30:21 And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left. But as I was working on my purpose statement, another verse came to mind. It was a verse I first came across a long time ago when I was involved with the AWANA group at the church in Gibbon and one that God brought my attention to again only recently. It is 2 Timothy 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. I think that goes along with my purpose statement pretty well and may even serve to refine it a bit. Not only will I work hard, but I will work with honesty and integrity so that I never need to feel ashamed about the job I have done.
I think this was a good exercise and recommend it to everyone. One of the most common questions we as humans always ask is, “What is my purpose?” As Christians, we know the answer to that questions is “To glorify God.” But sometimes we get a little mixed up on how exactly to do that, or perhaps we don’t quite know where to begin. Developing a purpose statement for yourself can help you figure out where your place is in God’s plan and what you can do to further His Kingdom. We can’t all be preachers or ministers, and we can’t all go on missions to Africa, but we all have abilities that we can use to glorify Him. Work on a purpose statement for yourself, and choose a life verse as well. You don’t have to go around telling everyone what it is, but it might just help you find some focus in your life when you feel yourself drifting.
You can view or print Regi Campbell’s book “Finding Your Purpose” here.
2 Timothy 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. ESV
Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. ESV