As a writer, I’ve become familiar with the ups and downs of purpose and calling. Riding the feel-good wave of praise, I coast along “knowing” I’m doing what I’m supposed to. But then, there’s the flub. The wipe out. The rejection. And suddenly I start wondering again.
Maybe I’m not meant to write. I’ve misread the signs. I’m nothing. A nobody.
And the battle to grab ahold of purpose and meaning begins all over again.
That’s how it used to be anyway.
But something’s changed.
The certain matter of my purpose in life has been fixed for me. Well, maybe fixed is the wrong word. Settled. That’s a better word. The matter has been settled. And now that I’m standing on this side of things, I can’t help but wonder why it took me so long to get here.
It probably has something to do with all my questions and fear and failing. When we fail at something, it’s so easy to think we should never have been doing it in the first place. But that’s not true. Failure has many uses, but defining who we are and our purpose is not one of them.
Fear is normal too. It’s not the enemy. It sharpens us—makes us better as long as we don’t let it be the boss.
And all my questions … well, they probably slowed me down the most. Where’s the proof? Why can’t it be clear? Why does this have to be so hard? Why doesn’t God just show us? And on and on. Don’t get me wrong. Questions are good. They’re important. Without questions, there would be no answers.
The problem comes when we ask the question and ignore the answer.
God wants us to know him. He desires for us to use our gifts and make a life. He knows what we need and when we need it. And he isn’t trying to be obtuse.
We ask the questions, and if we need to know the answers, he will tell us. The problem isn’t the lack of an answer. It’s ignoring it when it’s given.
We don’t believe it. We excuse it. We dismantle it. We chalk it up to luck or timing or anything except for the work of Almighty God. How long will the random events be only that? When will we trust him to direct our paths, open doors, and shut them. When will the matter be settled?
I probably misled you a little bit. I said the certain matter of my purpose in life has been settled. And yes, that’s true. But it’s not complete. This isn’t just about getting an answer. It’s about a relationship. A scary, huge, powerful, loving relationship with the Almighty God of the universe. I would be lying if I told you I had that all figured out. The truth is I’m just getting started.
Are you ready to bring your questions, fears, and failures to God and trust him to settle the matter?