Searching For Purpose
What is my purpose? Why am I here? These questions are contemplated by every individual at some point in their lives. Many struggle with it, the struggle to find the true purpose of our existence. Although the questions themselves are important, we have over complicated the answers. In a society that values productivity, skill, and overall contribution to the public we have associated our purpose with our profession or education. Our careers are not the answer to these profound questions.
As I was finishing high school, I struggled with my “purpose”. I could not determine what I wanted to study or a career I wanted to pursue. I believed since I did not have a clear passion for anything or a “Dream Job”, I was also lacking a purpose. This was not the case, rather I was just confused by the pressure and importance placed on choosing a career at the age of 18. I felt stuck and overwhelmed. So I took a year off to work and try to discover my passion, in hopes I would find my purpose in life.
During my year off, I was told about a DTS (Discipleship Training School) by a friend, and having done a missions trip before was excited for the chance to do 2-3 months of international work. Plus, 3 months of lectures in Los Angeles was an opportunity I was not willing to turn down. 6 months seemed like a large amount of time, but if we are willing to spend 4 years on our education, should we not be able to spend a fraction of that on our faith and personal growth. Taking designated time to focus on our walk with God is such a great privilege, leaving our lives back home for a season to grow and experience new things is something many are longing for, but are frightened to take that leap.
But I faced the fear and applied and a few months later I was flying to Los Angeles. During my DTS I was reminded why we were created, why God brought humanity out of the dust at the beginning. It was to dwell with Him, and since we have fallen away, Jesus calls us back. He calls us to bring others with us as well, so that we may all reside with Him. That is our purpose. To Live with God, and to tell others about Jesus’s sacrifice so that they may do the same.
For many this feels like God saying you must stay in missions. That being a Pastor, a Preacher, or a Worship Leader are the only career options for Christians. But God did not call us just to work in the church. He didn’t ask every one of us to pack our bags and go to Africa. He said go into all the earth (Mark 14:16), which means every part. We are called to be business men, firefighters, artists. Within each profession there are people who do not know God, and God has asked us to go to them and call them home.
We were born with desires in our hearts, we have dreams and wishes. We all have a will to see something extraordinary happen within our lives, and God wants to use those dreams because He is also the one who has placed them within our hearts. We need to move on from the question “what is my purpose?”, and start asking “How can I use my dreams, talent, education, and career to fulfill my purpose?”. God wants to use us… not just our Sunday mornings, but our day jobs, hobbies, and everything in between.
A DTS equips people with the ability and the foundation to reach people, whether in Africa or Europe, the Middle East or North America. God designed each one of us specifically in hopes that we could evangelize to those with similar passions. Throughout DTS, we learn to make every aspect of our lives a mission field. We learn to be ready to fulfill our true purpose on a daily basis. As we navigate our lives and careers, let’s not forget why we are here, and who we are here for.
Written by Alex Barber