What Is God’s Purpose For My Life? (Part 2 of 6)

What Is God’s Purpose For My Life? (Part 2 of 6)

“Lacking Joy and Excitement” 

On average, how do you feel when you wake up each morning? On average, do you greet each waking morning with love and joy in your heart? Or do you greet each morning with apathy and dread in your heart? Sure, some days we all will wake up with anxiety or dread in our hearts because of some impending challenge, or some burdensome circumstance that weighs heavy on our hearts. But on average, where are you? On what side of the bed do you wake up in the morning? If your mornings, and thus your days, are lacking with joy and excitement, you’re probably not doing what you were created to do. You’re not doing what God purposed you to do.  

Psalm 139 makes it crystal clear that God created you and me with astonishing painstaking uniqueness, whether you believe it or not.  For the psalmist teaches, “For I am fearfully and wonderfully made. . . how precious are your thought of me, oh Lord. . . if I should count them, they are more in number than the sand. . . ” (Psalm 139: 14, 17, 18). And because God created you and me with such uniqueness—all the while being so precious in his thoughts—he obviously loves us beyond all human comprehension. And with so great a love, there is definitely a purpose for your life. Do you not realize that you are God’s greatest miracle? 

For starters, one of God’s purposes is for you to have joy. In Galatians 5:22, for example, one of the many fruits of the Spirit is joy.  No doubt, there will be trials in life that will set us back; trials that will pull us up by our ankles and flip us on our heads; trials that will spin us round and round as if we are rag dolls.  

But with the fruit of the Spirit, patience and perseverance through life’s trials are far easier to overcome. I’m not speaking theoretically here. Take it from one who’s had to master patience and perseverance for 21 grueling years in federal prison!  So indeed, I can testify—first hand—how the fruit of the Spirit can bring forth joy, even during the darkest season of your life. Overall, you will have a sense of joy and excitement that fills your days, your work, and your relationships. 

In his book “Desiring God”, John Piper says, “The pursuit of God is not optional. It is not an “extra” that a person might grow into after he comes to faith.” 

So, is there a process one can undergo to find this joy? Yes. 

The process of finding such joy begins by making a commitment to yourself that you are going to pursue the kind of joy of which Galatians 5:22 teaches. The process begins with a change of your heart condition. In other words, you need a heart of gratitude for the things God has already done in your life. Sometimes we might have to force ourselves to be grateful by making gratitude a part of our daily routines. That could mean getting rid of, and staying away from, infectious people who walk around with a continual cloud of pestilence looming over them. Forcing ourselves to focus on thoughts and actions related to gratitude, regardless of circumstances, helps our brains develop positive emotions. Although in the end, it all boils down to one thing: choice. You can choose to be angry and miserable, or you can choose to be positive and joyful. 

If you want to get on the path of finding God’s purpose for your life, here’s a super simple, five-minute, evening gratitude exercise from the Father’s table. 

Every evening before you go to bed, write a short letter to God.  For thirty consecutive days, simply jot down three things that went well during the day., including their causes. Then provide a short, causal explanation for each good thing. That’s it. Then, at the end of your thirty-day exercise, go back through each day and begin counting and re-examining your blessings. What you will discover is an outpouring of blessings that are compounding into even bigger blessings! We spend tens of thousands of dollars on expensive electronics, big homes, fancy cars, and lavish vacations hoping for a boost our happiness. But this super simple exercise is a free alternative. . . and it works.  

If you begin this exercise tonight, you just might be looking back on today many years from now as the day when your whole life changed from darkness to light.  

Keep in mind: Discovering God’s purpose for your life begins with discovering that you are God’s greatest miracle. 

Dr. Michael W. McCoy, M.Div. JD., Th.D.

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