Monday 31 July 2017

Choose Life (Part Forty): Purpose

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Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” (John 5:5-6, NKJV)
We continue this week with the story of the sick man healed at the Pool of Bethesda. [John 5:1-15].

What will you be leaving behind, when your time here is done? What will be your legacy? Asked another way, what will you be taking with you into eternity? I know people say we come into life empty and leave empty. How so wrong? We come into a life full, and we are expected to leave empty and full, not full and empty, or empty. Twisting words? Maybe. Maybe.
"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead." (Nelson Mandela)
We come into life with a personality – unique identity, gifts, talents, and a purpose to fulfill. [Psalms 139; Jeremiah 1:4-5; Ephesians 2:10; Ecclesiastes 3:11] What we do with that determines what we leave with. None of it is required in the hereafter. They are meant for this life. We are meant to empty them here to bless and make a difference. We are meant to die used up and emptied.
"At its core, the idea of purpose is the idea that what we do matters to people other than ourselves." (Angela Duckworth)
We are meant to use these in making the world a better place, leaving a memorial in the hearts of men, and bringing glory to God. They are not for burial or hoarding. [Matthew 25:14-30] They are not to enrich the cemetery. They are meant to show forth God (his glory) in this life. [Matthew 6:10; Genesis 1:26-28; Habakkuk 2:14] They must be used and exhausted in this life. That is the part of leaving the scene empty. That, however, is not all.
"Purpose is the place where your deep gladness meets the world’s needs." (Frederick Buchner)
There is the part about leaving the scene full. When we truly live, we take with us, into eternity, the hearts and lives we touched. [Luke 16:9] It might take an eternity to truly know the people whose lives we touched, as we live our life to the fullest measure, fulfilling purpose. [Proverbs 10:7; 1 Corinthians 1:4-9] Touching lives; Making a difference for good, that is the true essence of life and living.

Are you alive? Are you living? Are you making a difference? Is your light shining brightly? Is it showing forth the glory of God? Is someone giving thanks on your behalf? Are you living? Are you truly alive? Can someone say because you are they are?
"God has given us two hands -- one to receive with and the other to give with. We are not cisterns made for hoarding; we are channels made for giving." (Billy Graham)
I had one of my friends visit the other day. He said, I have been a father to him, and today he is a father to many. Wow! That is my food. That is my life. That is why I do what I do. That is why I burn the midnight oil. That is why I spend the “inordinate” amount of hours studying. That is my WHY. That is why I am who I am. That is why I do what I do. That is why I carry myself the way I do. That is my joy. That is my pride. That is my price. What is yours?
"The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering." (Bruce Lee)

What is yours as it relates to God? What is yours as it relates to you? What is yours as it relates to your spouse? What is yours as it relates to your children? What is yours as it relates to your parents, siblings, relations, and everyone else? Do you know? What legacy are you leaving behind? What epitaph are you writing on your tombstone? Do you know? Does it matter to you? Is your life worth something? How much?

© 2017 Akin Akinbodunse

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