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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Lost with No Solution

Last week I got lost while driving to a familiar place. I really don't know how it happened. I went the wrong direction and soon had no clue where I was. My first problem was that I thought I knew where I was going so I didn't need to think about it. I was on auto but my software (contained in my IBM- Itty, Bitty Mind) needed an upgrade.

Once I knew I was lost I also knew what I didn't know. I didn't know where I was. There is no one you can call to give you directions if you can't tell them where you are. Besides, I didn't want to tell people that I got lost going to a familiar place. Yes, one that I have been to many times. They will surely ask what was wrong with me.

So, I wandered. I drove around hoping that I would see something that would trigger my memory. The more time I looked, the faster I began to drive. I can't say I had become frantic but I figured I would start getting calls if I didn't show up soon. I would have to confess to being lost. That would be embarrassing.

It's not like this is the first time this has happened to me. One night when I lived in Nashville, I was going home and turned one street earlier than I should. Both streets had a street light and both were dark streets. They had a lot of similarities in the way the houses looked. I just wasn't thinking. Suddenly I was at a dead end. My street continued on and I looked around. I didn't know these houses and couldn't even tell how I had gotten here. Once I turned around and went back to where I had turned I knew exactly what I had done.

This time was different. I had made so many turns I didn't know how to get back to where I had made my mistake. I thought, "Could the Lord use this to teach me something?" He did.

I believe most people wonder what is going to happen to them when they die. Sometimes they come up with their own solutions but they also know that these are their own solutions. They continue hoping to get some confirmation that they are right or, at least, some direction in which way they should go.

They listen to their friends who seem to be very convicted of what will happen. They don't know that their friends say these things with conviction but have no clue whether or not they are right. No one wants to admit that they are clueless so they speak with apparent confidence.

They are afraid to say, "I am lost here. Can you help me?" They believe that this will reveal that there is something wrong with them. They hope that believing something sincerely will make it true. They believe that God surely must grade on the curve so He should let just about everyone into Heaven. They feel lost with no solution.

I didn't like feeling that way. I don't want others to feel that way. There is no safety in being lost. It makes you extremely vulnerable. There is no joy in being lost- only worry when we take time to think.

If you would like to have some reassurances feel free to email me. I promise I won't say something is wrong with you. In fact, there is something extremely right with you. I will keep it all very confidential. Just don't keep wandering. Go for an answer.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Do You Know Why You Are Here?

A few years ago Rick Warren wrote a book to help people find their purpose in life. Millions bought the book. I suppose you would think that we now have millions of people who know their purpose. There were all kinds of wondrous stories about the book but largely society seems to keep going the same direction it was before the book. I wonder if a lot of people gave copies of the book to their friends who never read it. I wonder if others would rather have a best seller on their shelves than to read one.

Many people do not want to know what their purpose is. They would rather go with the flow rather than have to stop and think if what they are doing will fulfill their purpose. Purpose becomes a standard to evaluate yourself. You can always draw a bullseye around whatever you hit and call yourself a success as long as you don't have a predetermined standard.

A true purpose becomes work. It drives you to do what you were intended to do. Do I need to say that many people don't like work? I find people staying up late each night playing video games or watching movies while they deprive themselves of sleep because they want to squeeze as much of the time away from work as they can. Many of them work at not working when they get to work. They have no pride in what they do but assume they are wonderful just because they are human beings. After all, doesn't everyone get an award these days so that no one will feel left out?

People will justify all of this when they know the end of their lives are in sight. Some of this comes from what they have watched on tv. They will say things like, "I have made my peace with God." There is no truth in that statement but they heard some actor say and it seemed to make everyone feel better at the time so they figure it is something they should say. I wonder if they have any idea what "peace with God" really is.

How can you say you have made peace with God when He had a fulfilling purpose for your life and you rejected it all your life? How can you say you have peace with God apart from knowing His Son, Jesus?

Years ago I discovered my purpose and it freed me to be what God has called me to be. It has been the most invigorating, fulfilling and significant thing to infect my life. I would not want life to be without it. It is found in a verse:

Philippians 3:10 (NIV) " I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,"

I have not fulfilled my purpose yet. God's purpose is a lifetime pleasure.

Sometimes I fail to remember my purpose but God still draws me back to it again and again. When I am fulfilling my purpose I have true peace with God. I have significance because I am in the middle of something eternal.

I want everyone to know their life purpose. Do you know why you are here?