PURPOSE AND PAIN

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing”.  James 1:2-4 (NKJV)

For many young adults, the quest to find purpose increases as they age. It starts with the “Who am I?” question and graduates to the “Why was I created?” question. Many people undergo this search for answers in different ways but the motive is usually the same. They are looking for the reason they were created which promises happiness, fulfilment and financial stability.

For us as Christians, we understand that the purpose of our existence is determined by our Creator. We do not go searching for happiness or fulfilment rather we follow God and in Him we find the purpose of our lives.

In our Godly pursuit on this earth, our anchor scripture makes it clear that we will experience trials and tribulations. This is to say that in pursuit of purpose, we will experience pain. Our perfect example, Jesus Christ, felt intense pain on His way to fulfilling purpose (Philipains 2:8)   . 

In Matthew 28:36, Jesus was exceedingly sorrowful and He requested His disciples to stay awake with Him. However, in such a deep emotional state, His disciples could not be of help to Him. Yet, He persevered and relied on God fully for strength to forge ahead and fulfil purpose.

Fulfilling purpose is not pain free but it is definitely rewarding. After the sorrowful experience Jesus had, His reward for fulfilling purpose is seen in Hebrews 12:2. Just like Jesus, we are to keep our eyes on the prize and press on towards the mark.

In the history of the church, we learnt how most of the apostles were murdered for the Gospel. Not all of us will die such a gruesome death, but we will definitely encounter some hardship because Jesus already prepared us for such in John 15:20.

Apart from bodily harm that some believers will face on their way to fulfilling purpose, there are other forms of pain we face regularly which includes rejection, persecution, loneliness, self-denial, lost opportunities etc.

Purpose requires that we deny ourselves daily and pursue God selflessly. Fulfilling purpose is the most difficult yet rewarding task we will ever have to embark on. The good news is that we are empowered for it and all we need to do is rely on God for strength (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Brethren, be reminded that in your journey through life and in the purpose, you will not find it easy. But you are guaranteed to overcome the world because Christ has overcome the world for you! (John 16:33). You must therefore consider it all joy when you are persecuted, pressed or going through pain in the pursuit of purpose (James 1:2, 2 Corinthians 4:8,9). 

SAY THIS: I am not alone. God is working in and through me. I do not chicken out of God’s purpose and plan for my life out of fear or hard times. I have overcome the world, and I do not allow the world’s perspective to shape mine.

Bible Reading Plan:1 Kings 1-2; Psalms 37

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