6.a new purpose
On not getting it I sat there in the changing room, glowing but puzzled. We’d played a great game; the score had see-sawed between the two teams; we’d scored a couple of brilliant tries; trouble was everyone looked so darned glum. Sure we’d lost, but we’d played a magnificent game; so I said, “Well guys we played a great game against a tough team, surely that’s good; can’t we be happy with that?!” With that little sowing of the wind I reaped a whirlwind of fury and disappointment from senior players and coaches. They were more concerned about the championship and where we stood. Eastern Suburbs had been crawling up the ladder, heading for a sure thing finals spot, now it wasn’t so sure – we’d lost more than a game according to them. They’d had a purpose I hadn’t shared; this year was to be our turn – and I didn’t even know (or care) where we were on points – I just loved playing the game, rain, hail or shine.
Do you know your purpose, God’s purpose even?
A Divine Purpose We all have a Divinely ordained purpose in life, a general and a particular purpose, which Paul describes to some extent in Romans 12.1-11. It starts with sacrifice; His for us, and ours in worship for Him. He has given His all for us, which calls for a response in which our all becomes His. That’s how we come to service of any kind in His name – it takes and involves all that we have and are (if only because it came from Him in the very first place).
Sacrifice -> worship -> transformation -> obedience -> humility -> interdependence
In our giving of ourselves we are enabled and empowered for ministry that is active-gifted-ministry, each to their own calling in God in Christ. This is the work of God’s own Wild Goose that we call the Holy Spirit. It is distinctive to each of us, worked out in the Spirit’s power and grace. Paul’s instruction is that we serve in this unique and distinctive way with all the faith we’ve been given, to serve with all the energy, effort and heart with which He has endowed us as human followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.
And as we heard a week or two ago, we are do this in the unique, godly, beguiling Spirit-given characteristic that is selfless, other-preferring LOVE!!! This being the core and the driver of our every purpose in God, the heart and the motivation of all we attempt and dare for the sake of Him who gave His all for us.
Find and fulfil your purpose It is out there in the world of the mission that is just beyond our church drive – and even right here among us. It may mean we have to run a few courses to help people identify their gifts; it may mean we have to have a talk about being the missionary in your neighbourhood; but whatever it takes we’re going to do it, because reaching and saving our neighbours is more important even than our survival as a church. Look at this list of gifts/roles – what looks like you: speaking out for God, serving others, encouraging people, giving generously, giving leadership, showing kindness. Can you see the people who are lost? Can you grieve for their ignorance of God’s amazing, beautiful, life-transforming plan for them? Would you dare their mocking, misunderstanding, ostracising over-reaction to your attempt to love them with the love that saves?
6.a new purpose