“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Many of you may have asked “What is my purpose in life?” “How Do I Know What My Calling?”
Jesus came to this earth on a mission to fulfill his God ordained purpose. It didn’t happen overnight. He was born in a manger, grew up as a carpenter’s son, spent time studying the scriptures growing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man. It was a process.
John the Baptist had been preparing the way for his coming arrival. “As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: “A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him’ (Luke 3:4). When the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. “And as he was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased” (Luke 3:21-22). Jesus began his earthly ministry at “about 30 years of age” (Luke 3:23).
Jesus experienced a season in the wilderness in preparation for his ministry. He was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry” (Luke 4:1-2). He didn’t rush the process.
After being tempted in the wilderness he returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He went to the city Nazareth, his hometown where he had been brought up, and on the Lord’s (Sabbath) day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where his purpose is written: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” “Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him” (Luke 4:16-18).
The people spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. They said, “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked. Jesus in turn said, Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ And you will tell me, ‘Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.’ ”
“Truly I tell you,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.”(Luke 4:22-27).
The people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They drove Jesus out of the town, and attempted to throw him off the cliff. “But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.” (Luke 28:30)
Waking up each day feeling purposeless is incredibly frustrating. You look around and see your friends and coworkers living passionate, meaningful lives. I know the feeling well. They have deep relationships, rewarding jobs and a sense of direction that compels them to hop out of bed each morning with a spring in their step. I felt I had all of these things, yet sensed there for more.
Finding your life purpose is a journey. It is a divine process of time. There was a divine timing as to when Jesus would step into the fullness of his call. There is a divine timing for fulfillment of your calling. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:” Until that time allow God to shape you into a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good …to fulfill his purposes in the earth (2 Tim 2:21).
As you grow and mature you will begin to find your true identity in Christ. As I would study the Scriptures I discovered myself and life’s purpose as a minister of the gospel with a passion to see justice prevail in society through the life of Jesus and the story of Deborah. I couldn’t imagine how I would get to this place. I developed a passion to see the church God ordained in the Book of Acts come to fruition. We’re not there yet, but I believe we will experience the power of the Holy Spirit for healing, deliverance, miracles, signs and wonders that fell on the early church very soon.
Understand during this process you will be tempted to find something better or to quit. Satan will try to show you something better, something more appealing. Resist the temptation for man’s approval and the glamour of having riches and honor among men.
People who know you from yesteryears will applaud your efforts, but may not embrace your new identity and passion for kingdom purposes. Stay the course. In due season you will begin to see the manifestation of God’s promise over your life.
The call of God is progressive. He we will mature you gradually into the fullness of his plan.