5 Essentials of Purpose-Driven Living
The Pillar Processes of Accomplishing Your God-Given Purpose
In over 30 years of pursuing God’s purposes for my life and helping others do the same, here are the 5 main pillars I’ve learned to go from hoping to accomplishing.
God is Always Doing More Than We Realize
There are wonderful promises in the Bible telling us that God is at work in our lives, He will finish what He started in us, and that if He has called us then He will ultimately perfect us as well. (Philippians 2:12–13, Philippians 1:8, Romans 8:29)
There is no doubt about it, God is using all of our life experiences to form us, shape up, and prepare us for each phase in our purpose journey. He is brilliant, powerful, and knows what we need and when we need it.
We can rest in the reality that God is an expert craftsman, motivated by pure love, and can see every single factor at all times….so He is able to do His amazing work in us exactly the right way!
That’s one, big, big side of the coin.
Our Decisions Matter
The other side of the coin is that God has given us free will. God is love and love can never be forced so God respects the freedom He has given us to make choices.
And as you have already seen, our choices matter. Though God invites us to believe in Him and follow Him, He respects our decision to choose Him or to reject Him.
God invites us to interact with Him in prayer, to study His word and grow, and to share what He gives us with those He has prepared us to serve. But He will not make us do any of those things.
As C.S. Lewis wrote, “Free will, though it makes evil possible, is also the only way that makes any love or goodness or joy worth having.”
Paul wrote that we are co-workers with God (1 Corinthians 3:9). God supplies the grace, power, and resources we need, but we take actions that turn God’s plans into reality (at least to an important degree).
In my journey I’ve seen there are 5 main processes I need to manage in order to cooperate with God as He works out His purposes in my life.
- Purpose Foundations.
Every aspect of life needs to be solid in the foundational, primary, fundamentals. Whether it’s a literal building, our faith, health, or an organization, when the foundations are solid and strong then the rest has a much better chance of success.
What are purpose foundations? Things like:
Understanding God’s Big Purposes
Abiding in Christ
How Spiritual Transformation Happens
Biblical Goal Setting
When those kinds of pieces are solid in our lives, we’re able to move forward on solid ground.
2. Clarify God’s Purpose For This Season of Life.
Ecclesiastes 3 tells us there is a time and season for everything. A very few are called to do the same thing their entire lives, but most of us have different callings at different times.
Jesus existed before creation. He was actively involved in creating all things and still hold them together by the word of His power.
He was a carpenter according to God’s purpose until He was 30. For 3 1/2 years He taught, healed, and trained leaders to carry on His ministry. Then He was crucified, buried, and rose from the dead. Now He is our great High-Priest, interceding for us, developing our faith, answering prayers, and running the universe with the Father and the Spirit.
Different purposes for different seasons in His life.
The Apostle Paul was a teacher in Antioch according to God’s purpose for several years. Then, for the next season of His life He was a travelling church planter. Then He spent time under Roman guard where He wrote more of His letters, before dying as a martyr. Each of those seasons were in line with God’s purposes for that time in his life.
The same will be true for you. Your part is to take the steps needed to clarify what God wants you to focus on during each season of your life.
When you’re doing what God planned, you’ll experience what He wants you to experience as He shapes you for the next phase, while using you to help others.
3. Do Your Purpose.
Once you know what God wants you to do, now you make a plan and take action. You can expect to experience both God’s grace and the enemy’s attacks as you move forward.
That’s why it’s good to have a basic plan, then adjust as needed.
No one makes a perfect plan because there are always unexpected challenges we’ll face. But a plan gives you a starting point. As you take action, with a little prayerful reflection, you’ll be able to discern the next few steps and adjust.
No one makes progress by only making a plan. Plan, take action, adjust.
As you take small steps over and over, it’s amazing how much is accomplished over time.
Jesus said that He glorified the Father by accomplishing the work the Father gave Him to do. (John 17:4) You and I can do the same because God will work with us as we move forward according to His plans and purposes.
Each phase of God’s purpose journey for your life will require godly growth to achieve. God’s plans for us are so incredible, ultimately being formed into the image of Jesus and ruling and reigning with Him in eternity (Romans 8:29, Ephesians 4:15). One of the ways God helps us grow is to make the next phase of our purpose process too big for where we currently are.
God’s main calling on David was to be king of Israel. But at the beginning, David was not ready for that…He had a lot of growing to do. So God used each phase of his journey to teach him and add more to His development and transformation.
From being a shepherd, caring for sheep and protecting them from predators to serving in King Saul’s home to defeating Goliath, leading troops, leading hurting people in the wilderness, ruling Judah, to then ruling all of Israel. Each phase of David’s journey required growth in order to move to the next phase.
Learning how to cooperate with God in His growth and transformation work in your life will enable you to keep moving forward and accomplish everything God had in mind when He created you.
From the very beginning God’s design for His image bearers has been “be fruitful and multiply.” (Genesis 1:27–28)
Before ascending into heaven Jesus told His disciples to go and make disciples of every people group: multiplication. (Matthew 28:18–20)
The Book of Acts describes the early church as “multiplying” as they shared the Gospel and made disciples.
A really important part of fully living God’s purposes for our lives (not stopping short along the way) is learning how to multiply our efforts and our knowledge.
The two main ways to multiply ourselves and our efforts are:
a. Increasing our personal productivity. Developing skills and processes that work for us personally to accomplish more without working more.
b. Leadership; learning to work with and through others to achieve agreed upon goals. Hebrews 5:11–12 tells us that it is God’s plan that all believers learn to lead (at some level) in order to keep our relationship with God healthy.
We actually even grow and learn more by leading than simply listening.
When you increase your personal productivity through methods that fit your personality and style and when you keep improving your leadership skills, you not only increase your impact in the world but you multiply it.
Jesus took 12 men and started a movement that keeps growing stronger over 2,000 years later. He multiplied Himself and taught them how to do the same.
When you manage and develop these 5 pillar processes you cooperate with God and fulfill the plans and purposes He made for you before He created the world.
- Strengthen your Purpose Foundations.
- Clarify what God wants You to Do During This Season of Life
- Do it, Plan and take Action.
- Keep Growing.
- Multiply your Efforts.
If you want more FREE resources on living a Jesus-centered, Jesus-empowered life go to www.TruVineMission.com
If you want more training and/or coaching on how to clarify and then accomplish your God-given purposes head over to www.MarkFurlongCoaching.com