We’re on a mission from God.

Every Christian has a God ordained purpose in life.

Readership: Christians;

Introduction

Reader Jeff Barnes posed a very pertinent question which is addressed in this post.

“The notion of having a mission is still somewhat foreign to me.  Would you care to elaborate or explain what your mission is?”

Ed answered,

“It refers to a driving sense of purpose, in this case related to my sense of divine calling.  A mission is having a powerful sense that, regardless of the context, you have a firm idea of what your duty is.  It can also be called a sense of identity.  I know who I am and what God requires of me in any context.”

A man’s mission from God is referred to in many ways.

  • God’s will for your life.
  • Your calling in life.
  • Your foreordained purpose for living.
  • It is your work on earth that will be judged in heaven (not for salvation, but for rewards).

True believers are known to have a passion for some unique purpose in their own lives.

Many books have been written on this subject.  Probably the most famous one that has come out in recent years is “The Purpose Driven Life” by Pastor Rick Warren.  Understanding Your Place in God’s Kingdom, by Pastor Myles Munroe.  The Purpose of Man, by A. W. Tozer.  But it’s not a new subject in Christian literature.  Another book that was very popular in the past is The Christian’s Secret to a Happy Life, by Hannah Whitehall Smith.  I found a PDF study guide for this book too.

The important thing is to find this mission for yourself… and LIVE IT!!!

Case Study 1 – The Blues Brothers

Back in 1980, there was a movie starring Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi called The Blues Brothers.  It remained wildly popular even up into the late 1990’s, and saw a reprise in 1998.

The running theme of the movie was about how the two main characters passionately, and at times, miraculously overcame all the challenges involved with forming (or rather, reviving) a blues band.

It features musical numbers by rhythm and blues (R&B), soul, and blues singers James Brown, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, and John Lee Hooker.  It features non-musical supporting performances by John Candy, Carrie Fisher, Henry Gibson, and Charles Napier.

The story is a tale of redemption for paroled convict Jake and his blood brother Elwood, who set out on “a mission from God” to save from foreclosure the Catholic orphanage in which they were raised.  This gave the main characters a strong purpose to reunite their R&B band and organize a performance to earn the $5,000 needed to pay the orphanage’s property tax bill.  Along the way, they are targeted by a homicidal “mystery woman”, Neo-Nazis, and a redneck country-western band—all while being relentlessly pursued by the police.

This plot generated the catchquote, “We’re on a mission from God!”  I’m sure the producers tacitly presented this phrase under the guise of the determination shown by the main characters, and it was assumed to be a smug joke.

But to the mature believer, this phrase is not just a comedy quip, it is a central tenet of the Christian life.

On the 30th anniversary, L’Osservatore Romano, the daily newspaper of the Vatican City State, wrote that the film is filled with positive symbolism and moral references that can be related to Catholicism.  They went further, stating, The Blues Brothers “is a memorable film, and, judging by the facts, a Catholic one”.

The purpose driven life of a Christian is just like the Blues brothers, all manner of jetsam and flotsam is thrown into the mix in their passionate resolve to put the band back together.  In the process, they get away with virtually everything, evading jealous wives, hardened criminals, vengeful enemies, and the whole city’s police force, which culminated in the biggest automobile demolition of all film history.

Case Study 2 – Myself

I won’t presume to assume anyone else’s mission here, but for me, I know my spiritual identity is that of a peacemaker.  Wherever I go, people calm down and adopt a fresh perspective.  Many times in my life, I have walked into a room where people were having a heated argument, and as soon as they became aware of my presence, they toned it down and quickly resolved their beef.  I don’t need to say anything at all.

People have the common misperception that a peaceful person is a wuss, but appearances are deceiving in this case.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Think of Mel Gibson’s role as the Scottish hero, William Wallace, in the classic film Braveheart.  All he wanted was to live a quiet, peaceful life as a farmer with his wife and children.  But after the British killed his wife and destroyed his farm, it was all out WAR!  He took on the mightiest army in the world at that time, and (for a while) won independence for Scotland.

For me, the enemy is not an army of troops, but is instead the principalities and powers of this world that would dare attack my peace, my home, my marriage, and my Shalom.  In effect, the enemy is divorce, abortion, feminism, and the pervasive spiritual blindness and apostasy of our age.  I find an outlet for this purpose in blogging.  “The pen is mightier than the sword.”

Concluding Statements

It’s easy to get your mind bogged down with wondering what God’s will might be for your life.  This is because thinking about it won’t help you much.  The way to find it is to examine your spiritual constitution, your “spiritual gifts”, and be aware of what your convictions are leading you to do on a moment by moment basis.  Your deeper values could also be used as a clue about what is most important to you, what is non-negotiable to you, the thing you must have, or must do, no matter what the cost.

The mind’s role in all of this is to help you figure out the best way to carry out your mission.  The mind should be used as a tool of the heart, not the other way around.  That is, you shouldn’t be using your mind to decide where your heart should be.  Instead, your heart should be telling your mind what problems need to be solved.

Related

About Jack

Jack is a world traveling artist, skilled in trading ideas and information, none of which are considered too holy, too nerdy, nor too profane to hijack and twist into useful fashion. Sigma Frame Mindsets and methods for building and maintaining a masculine Frame
This entry was posted in Decision Making, Desire, Passion, Determination, Fundamental Frame, Influence, Models of Success, Moral Agency, Perseverance, Purpose, Stewardship, The Power of God. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to We’re on a mission from God.

  1. Would you care to elaborate or explain what your mission is?

    This has been ruined for me. The Dixie Square Mall was demolished. (H/T for a great article!)

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    • Jack says:

      @ Matt, this is a very important concept, so I will address (1) ones mission in life, and (2) my own mission in future posts. Thanks~!

      Liked by 1 person

      • It was a interesting part of the movie. When I was a bit younger, I had a hankering for things like that. The irony is that I enjoyed helping people when I started to get older. I helped demo part of a house near “Lil Vietnam” for a HFH house. So I got to do both. (Needle gunning on a ship was a therapeutic exercise too).

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  2. Jeff Barnes says:

    Thanks for the article. I am prone to overthinking, so this: “That is, you shouldn’t be using your mind to decide where your heart should be” is a good reminder.

    I am not terribly surprised that you say your spiritual identity is that of a peacemaker. From reading your blog I have gotten the sense that you’re a very chill and optimistic dude.

    Not sure if this is the place but I will ask anyway,
    May I ask what church you go to?
    And is anyone around here an orthodox Christian? I have recently been considering whether Eastern Orthodoxy is the one true apostolic Church, and wouldn’t mind getting in contact with an EO Christian. I don’t know any EO Christian IRL, but I am guessing this blog might attract some?

    Oh, and if it wasn’t for Roosh V of the manosphere, converting to EO not long ago, I probably would not have come across or been open to EO at this point in my life. Also reminded me of the pitiful dilemma of a new convert to Christianity who has to decide between RC, EO, and the thousands of protestant denominations.

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    • Jack says:

      @ Jeff Barnes,

      I grew up in a Southern Baptist church, but since I left home for college in 1990, I have attended just about every type of Christian church there is. The church I attend now doesn’t formally align itself with any mainstream denomination, but the pastor has a Calvinist background, so much of the teaching is Calvinistic.

      In sum of my experience with churches, I would say that the people in the congregation are what make a church lousy or great, not the denomination. Also, certain denominations focus more heavily on certain aspects of doctrine, so if a person happens to be deficient in his comprehension of that particular angle of doctrine, then that particular church will speak to him more clearly about his spiritual needs.

      I understand EO is growing in popularity, and I would guess this is because of the convergence of Protestantism. Protestantism has totally failed in the way of marriage and family, and a lot of people are drawn to EO because it is strong in this respect. As I just described in the previous paragraph, it fills in the “missing pieces” and gives people what they need most in their lives.

      There is a well respected blogger, Scott Klajic, who posts here on Sigma Frame once in a while. He is Eastern Orthodox. Any questions you have about EO might attract a response from him. He has a professional website here, and his own personal blog can be found at this link.

      The idea of “not using your mind to decide where your heart should be” is a perspective I picked up from reading Ed Hurst at Do What’s Right and Radix Fidem. Actually, this concept is in the Bible many times, for example…

      “Lean not unto your own understanding…” (Proverbs 3:5)
      “You should no longer walk as the Gentiles walk in the vanity of their minds…” (Ephesians 4:17)

      But for some bizarre reason, even though I grew up in church and have attended all kinds of churches, I never really understood this very important, perhaps crucial piece of faith until I started reading Ed’s writings. (This was sometime in 2018.) Maybe it’s because this isn’t something you can just hear about and pick it up right away. You have to focus on it and learn to navigate through life using your heart. I didn’t really understand the idea until I had read Ed’s stuff for several months, and even then, I didn’t really “get it” for another year. Even now, I am still in the process of learning.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jeff Barnes says:

        Interesting, I am in college right now and have been in a Reformed Calvinist church since birth. I have never fully embraced Calvinism, but have had to endure all sorts of cognitive dissonance such a prideful rationalistic system entails. Recently stumbled across this article
        (https://blogs.ancientfaith.com/orthodoxyandheterodoxy/2014/01/23/why-i-stopped-being-a-calvinist-part-5-a-deformed-christology/) which is part of a series that articulated many of the problems I had in part reflected on in my youth. After reading that series I realised that if I were to pick a church based on my own ill-developed theological beliefs, I would be in the Protestant sea of relativism. I do not think I am the kind of person who would enjoy or be willing to engage in church shopping either. Many protestants like you would claim that there are more important criteria for choosing a church than theological correctness, which is understandable given the Protestant frame and landscape. Fortunately not too long after that, I started reading articles explaining the problem with Sola Scriptura. I can’t remember the first article I read, but this article, http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/tca_solascriptura.aspx, to me is one of the best refutations. This lead me to a key switch in mindset, changing from using my understanding of the gospel to find the church, to instead using my understanding of the church to find the gospel. I believe the first article I read was on a Roman catholic blog, which to my surprise concluded that if sola scriptura is an unworkable, invalid assumption then either the RC or Orthodox church claim to being the continuation of the historic early christian church ‘must’ be accepted. I would claim the most Protestants are hopelessly ignorant of church history before the reformation, in my case I had not heard that Orthodoxy claims to have the apostolic faith once handed to the saints. Having grown up with all sorts of catholic ‘hate speech’ and anti-catholic propaganda, I semi-consciously considered many Catholics to not be christian, so for me it was a relief to discover that there was another church which claimed continuity with the early church. Now I have been learning more about catholicism so as to make an educated not emotional decision as to who is in continuity with the early church.

        Not sure what you mean by the convergence of Protestantism. I am certainly not converting to Orthodoxy because of its popularity, though interestingly I have heard that Orthodox churches in America have the highest proportion of formally educated people. And that there is a high proportion of well-read intelligent converts, which lends credence to the idea that orthodox have the truth and the fullness of the faith.

        I would be interested to hear more about this: “Protestantism has totally failed in the way of marriage and family.” If I look at my church I think there is little if any support for marriages and family. There even was a minister in a sister church of ours who committed adultery and left his family behind (this is a rare case and I don’t suppose it to be limited to any denomination). My understanding of orthodoxy is that they recognise the importance of life on earth, of positively interacting with the culture around us and reject the gnostic ideas of the vanity of the earthly temporal existence. In regards to my own family, it is a bit of a shitshow where one of my parents is malevolent and the other terribly ignorant. I wonder how much impact a more positive support system for protestant families would have affected my childhood. I don’t want to list my issues but suffice to say that being raised by narcissistic parents is incredibly damaging. Last two years I have been doing a lot of healing. Sorry for the tangent, I don’t talk about many of my problems with anyone IRL, so sometimes I express myself online instead, which provides the anonymity for me to be willing to be vulnerable.

        Part of the reason we probably missed the concept is that Protestantism is a heady religion. Instead of, “Lean not unto your own understanding…” (Proverbs 3:5), we do in fact learn to engage and rely on our own intellects to understand the ‘right’ theology. In contrast the orthodox faith has the faith once delivered to the saints which includes much more than correct theology. Again if you consider the climax of the respective orthodox/catholic or protestant service, (the eucharist and the sermon), one primarily draws the heart/soul the other the head. But this is probably peripheral and only makes it less likely for us to grasp the concept sooner than other Christians.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Novaseeker says:

      Scott is EO, as Jack points out. I am also Orthodox.

      Roosh, as I understand it, reverted to the Armenian Apostolic Church, which is the church of his mother — the Armenians are not “Eastern Orthodox” but are generally referred to as “Oriental Orthodox” because they are Eastern, but rejected the formulations of the Council of Chalcedon (together with the Copts and a part of the Syrian Church), so they are not in communion with “Eastern Orthodox”, yet have warm relations with us.

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      • Jack says:

        I learned from my current pastor that Calvinists have a big theological aversion to “Armenianism”. But what he is actually referring to is the doctrinal stances of Baptists and Methodists, and maybe others. I’m not 100% sure, but I don’t think Armenianism has anything to do with Armenians. Someone should correct me if I’m wrong.

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      • Novaseeker says:

        Yes — there is a distinction between “Arminianism”, which is a school within Protestantism (and often associated with Wesley), on the one hand, and the Armenians, on the other, which are a country located in Transcaucasia which has been Christian since ~300.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Jeff Barnes says:

        Thanks for pointing that out. Most if not all I have been learning is about the Orthodox faith (I mistakenly thought Oriental orthodox was some heretical offshoot of the eastern church). After watching just one video about the distinction between eastern and oriental my understanding is that they split because of theological and linguistic misunderstandings, and while they are no longer in communion, they hold to almost the same faith, theology, liturgy etc.

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      • Novaseeker says:

        Jeff —

        Yes, that’s correct. The issue was that the Armenians, Copts and Syrians disliked the Council’s formulation of the doctrine of the two natures of Christ, thinking that the way that the council explained and formulated this resulted in two Christs living side by side in the same person, rather than one Christ with two natures in one person, so they were for centuries known as “monophysites”, or those who believe in “one nature” for Christ.

        The theological consultation between the EO and OO has resolved that this arose due to linguistic misunderstandings primarily, as you say, since Greek at the time was not the primary language of any of those three churches, but that the substance of the faith as confessed by the council at Chalcedon is in fact believed by the OOs as well. So there is at this time no real theological division. I believe that the same conclusion has been reached in separate discussions that have taken place on a parallel track between the EOs and the RCs.

        At this time it appears that the OOs wish to maintain warm relations with both the RCC and the EOC while not fully entering either of them — it appears that they are hesitant to choose between us. In any case, the OOs are generally very welcome in EO parishes — I have often seen an OO family here or there which attends an EO parish and fully participates in the sacramental life there, often because there isn’t an OO parish of their type available locally. I believe that the same is true of the RC, but I think it’s more common that they are present in EO parishes due to the liturgical similarities being much stronger, especially with the new form of the Mass that the RCs have used since Vatican II. In my area we have both Armenian, Coptic and Ethopian (they are an offshoot of the Copts) OO churches, so there tend to be fewer OOs in our EO parishes here, but you still do sometimes see them.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. whiteguy1 says:

    Great explanation of the differences between Calvinists and “Arminianism”…has nothing to do with our brothers who hail from that country.

    Click to access 5pts.pdf

    This whole website is chalked full of great thoughts and teaching.
    http://withchrist.org/responsibility.htm

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  4. The mind should be used as a tool of the heart, not the other way around. That is, you shouldn’t be using your mind to decide where your heart should be. Instead, your heart should be telling your mind what problems need to be solved.

    This applies only to the heart of the believer, surrendered and enthralled to Christ and in His service. And to no other case.

    Now it may be the devil, or it may be the Lord,
    But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

    ~ Bob Dylan

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    • Jack says:

      @ J. J. Griffing, I have come to understand that there are lots of people who are in tune with the heart-led way, but they use it to serve their own purposes, which is essentially serving Satan. These people are some of the most dangerous people of all. Some eastern religions also focus on the heart-led way, and it does bless their personal domain. However, these blessings are limited, they do not grow to envelop the culture, because they fail to recognize the larger scope of God’s law.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Only noble born men are qualified to do housework for unicorns | Σ Frame

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