Your occupation or career is not the same as your vocation or calling. Most people see their purpose as revolving around various pursuits that can be summarized in nine ‘P’s:
While none of these pursuits are bad in themselves, when they take first place above our pursuit of knowing Christ and reproducing His life in the lives of others, they become idols and obscure the greater purpose God has prepared for us.
Our True Purpose
Instead, God’s purpose for our lives transcends our present circumstances. Our career and circumstances might change, but our purpose is something more enduring.
Consider these statements that describe God’s role in defining the purpose of His people:
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
And before you were born I consecrated you.
– Jeremiah 1:5 [referring to Jeremiah’s calling as a prophet]
Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.
– Psalm 139:16
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
– Ephesians 2:10
Even before we were born, God prepared a purpose for us. On one level, He has called all believers to the same purpose, which might be summarized as edification (our sanctification) and evangelism (the gospel’s proclamation). Taking Jesus as our example, we could also summarize this universal purpose as learning the Father’s will and walking in the power of the Spirit.
On another level, God’s purpose is unique for each individual based on our abilities and circumstances. It would be wise for us, therefore, to seek the Father’s guidance in determining a purpose statement for our lives that incorporates our universal purpose into our unique circumstances and personality.
Watch more of Ken Boa’s Friday morning study videos here.
This series on purpose and passion is based on portions of Ken Boa’s Conformed to His Image: Biblical, Practical Approaches to Spiritual Formation.