I was not born into a family of wealth or pre-determined purpose for my life. Quite frankly and initially, failed to have a vision, passion and realize my gifts or talents. But I had a mother who loved me. She asked, "What are your plans after high school graduation?" "None," I said. My mother stated, "Well then, you will go to Miami Dade Junior College." In obedience, I enrolled and completed my Associate Arts degree in Social Work. It took approximately 1 ½ years. Social Work seemed like the easiest course of study. Therefore, I was motivated and finished junior college to get a job. The purpose was accomplished in the obtainment of my first government job at the age of nineteen.
There was no written step-by-step plan. The thoughts in my head leading to success were listening and following through. You may find yourself in a similar situation. If so, listen to parents and/or as appropriate to others such as pastor or mentor for sound council. Solomon was probably the wisest man that ever lived. He stated, Proverbs 1:8-9 (NIV) "Listen, my son (including daughter), to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching." When you read verse 9, it basically means to follow instruction and teaching leads to success. I would like to add, it works most times...regardless of age.
Also during young adulthood, I don't remember praying to clarify my purpose. Yes, believing in God, but not fully committed. Maybe this is another relatable moment. God continued showering me with His favor and love. Despite my lack of commitment and unclear view of purpose, God is all-knowingly. He speaks through the prophet Isaiah 46:10 (NIV), "I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, 'My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please." Likewise God understands and continue showering you with His favor and love.
Trials & Errors
Now much older, I have learned through trials and errors the importance of prayer; including God's will is my life purpose. To better understand, God gives us assignments. This is like a parent to their child or teacher to their student. For me, failure to obey my assignment resulted to unfavorable consequences that included lack. Is it possible you can see a little of yourself in me? If so, when we "Come to ourselves" like the prodigal son, we make it right with God, parent and/or teacher. Read Luke 15:11-32 (NIV).
Thus I repented to God for failure to study an assignment that He gave me; and for putting my will before His. I was more interested in running social service programs and trusted my resources. How-be-ever in the midst of despair, God reassured and restored me. Paul shares Christ's love for him in spite of himself. Read 1Timothy 1:8-14 (NIV). God will do the same for you. The ultimate purpose is to serve God with our gifts and talents. The key point in Ephesian 6:7-8 is "Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the LORD, not people, because you know that the LORD will reward each one for whatever good they do, whether they are slave or free."
Finally realizing my purpose (supporting the success of children, youth, families, schools and communities) increased and evolved during my professional, spiritual and personal life experiences. I developed a big heart (passion) and gifts/talents (i.e. Social Work Master Degree, conflict resolution/reconciliation trainer and practitioner, minister & writer). I strongly believe you will define and/or continue to increase your purpose throughout your career, spiritual and personal life practices. Yet the 21st century presents greater challenges. As MILLENNIALS, you are competing with automation (robots) in retail, customer services and other industries; in addition to future trends that requires more specific education or training for survival.
Defining Your Purpose
With this being said, you must be well prepared for the workforce. It is important to assess your likes, dislikes, values, career interests, gifts and talents to better define your purpose. What were your best subjects in school? What motivate you? Do you work better alone or with others? Do you enjoy working with your hands? Do you have good writing skills? Do you love technology? Note, there are many online assessment opportunities, like 123test.com to help identify work values and career choices; and personal value assessments. Awareness of the top ten to twenty careers assists in determining purpose; and finally libraries, career centers, high school, colleges and universities can be of assistance.
In summary it is important to have a vision which are dreams and positive self-image. You must see yourself as God sees you. Psalm 139:14 (KJV) "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." God has more precious thoughts of you. Continue reading verses 15-17. Then Habakkuk 2:2 (KJV) "And the Lord answered me, and said, write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he (including she) may run that readeth it." Writing the vision helps you to focus and remain on track.
Purpose is self-determination, persistence and drive. James 2:20 (NIV) "You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds (work) is useless?" Goal is ones aim and objective. You are made for good works. Deuteronomy 28:13 (NIV) says, "The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the LORD your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom."
Remember as you go through the process of defining your life purpose, goals are redefine, revolve, change and you mature through your spiritual, professional and personal experiences.
"The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away." (author unknown)
This Defining Your Life Purpose - "God's Will" article increase the attainment and fulfillment of your life purpose, passion, gifts and talents to ultimately bless others! In the name of Jesus, Amen!