Every Christian has a God ordained purpose in life.
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?”
“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.”
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.
- Σ Frame: Works, Faith and Miracles in Stewardship (2009 October 12)
- Christian Publishing House: Christians: Only Those Doing The Will Of The Father Receive Eternal Life – Are You Doing God’s Will? (2020 July 1)
- The Open Bible (Stephen Smith): 100 Bible Verses about Whatever You Do, Do It As If Unto The Lord (2020 July 8)