Here's a teaser from Chapter Five in "Christ Walk."
Biblical Big Idea #5: “Your Journey has the Lord’s approval.” Judges 18:6
Miles Journeyed: ______________
Exercise Chosen: ______________
Spiritual Thoughts: _____________
Why are we here? God created us with a purpose. We have a journey to take on our time here on earth. We are not here for ourselves. I believe that many have great dissatisfaction because they are so focused on themselves and their needs. We took the concept of “me time,” which is not necessarily a bad thing, but turned it into a “me all the time.” If there was one book I would recommend on our Purpose, I would recommend “A Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren. He has a wonderful message about our time on earth being not about us. It was an amazing relief to hear that. I felt like a burden had been lifted from my shoulders when I read, “It’s not about you.”
If it’s not about me, then, we were created with purpose to do for others. If you let go of the burden of what society, government, politics, movies, magazines, and others try to tell you is your purpose and rather focus on what you feel called to do for your family, friends, church, and community, then I think you will find the burden lifted from your shoulders. There is such great joy in letting go of the self and doing for others. As I discussed in the previous chapter, my journey for health frustrated me until I included others in my goal and made my running about doing for others, not just for myself. We are all called to do different things and THAT is what keeps the world ticking when we are doing our calling in the glory of God. “As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to life a life worth of the calling you have received.” Ephesians 4-1.
Here is a little exercise for you. Get a piece of paper. I like a 3x5 card because I can fold it in my wallet. Think about something you either want to change about yourself or something you’ve always wanted to do but have been afraid to do it. Write it on one side of your card. On the other side, write the three most important things in your life. For me, the three most important things are God, my family, and my health. These may be yours as well. Many people have God and family in the top three; sometimes a job is also considered important. When you look back at what you change about yourself, is it reflected in the three most important things in your life?
For example, if you need to quit smoking and you cannot find the strength to do it, consider that smoking does not support the OTHER things in your life: it may take time away from your devotion to God; it is an addiction (one that costs money and has great impacts for you, your family and the environment). If you are addicted to tobacco, food, drink, drugs, whatever it may be, then you have given so much of your vital energy to an inanimate thing that takes you away from your time with God. God would rather you be addicted to him than a vice. And he can give you the power to overcome that vice. Consider your family. Tobacco, or whatever other bad habit you may want to address, has physical ramifications for your family. Children of smokers have multiple health problems; these habits cost a great deal of money that could be a burden on your family; the toxins are damaging to your home and your family would be utterly lost without you if you were to die from your habit. Needless to say, if health was one of your most important priorities, tobacco use or ANY other addiction is bad for your health. I hope that goes without saying.
I also hope that you see this exercise as a positive reinforcement for WHY you can change your life. You have three important things to lift you up and take on any challenge or goal that you may have. I used this exercise in helping me to get going with this book. I knew I needed to write this book, but it was much harder than I ever thought it could be. I knew also that writing this book supported the three most important things in my life.
I also hope that you see that the three most important things in your life are an important part of your journey. Your journey here on earth was ordained by God. I do not believe that we live a meaningless existence here at the whim of a petulant God. I believe that God reveals himself to all of us at different points in our lives and in different ways.
Thoughts to Ponder:
1. Is there something I want to change about myself or work towards?
2. What are the three most important things in my life?
3. What are three things that are keeping me from being successful with my goal?
4. What can I do to overcome them?