Category: Purpose

How To Find Your Purpose In Life

There are so many motivational books, motivational speakers and material that exist today with the purpose of attempting to teach people how to find their meaning & purpose in life.
Certain books & motivational speakers for example, focus on the idea that the purpose of people is to be rich in this life and that your life cannot have meaning if you do not live according to a particular lifestyle or if you don’t acquire certain possessions.
Others focus on the idea that you cannot find meaning and purpose until you are obtaining & living according to your personal dreams and desires in life?
Another school of thought says that purpose and meaning cannot be found without a good education and without living according to your potential.

However, are all people meant to be rich? Are all people’s personal dreams meant to be achieved? Is education the key to understanding your purpose and meaning in life? How can I find meaning & purpose in life? What does the Bible teach?

Jeremiah 29:11-13 NKJV
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

God’s thoughts of us are undoubtedly good. He does not and He cannot think evil towards us. God is also ready to listen to us when we pray and if we truly and genuinely seek Him.

 

How To Find Your Purpose In Life
We are able to find our unique purpose and meaning in life through the following

1) You Must Have A Relationship With Your Maker
God created you for a reason. He also created you with a unique purpose. However, for you to understand your purpose in life, you must have a relationship with your Creator. Only your Creator can tell you why He created you. Therefore you cannot know your purpose unless you have a relationship with the One who created you.
Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’
Jeremiah 1:4,5 NKJVThen the word of the Lord came to me, saying: 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
Therefore you must first be born again to discover your purpose. You cannot have a relationship with God unless you are born again and you cannot discover your purpose in life unless you have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
John 15:5 NKJV“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing”.

2) Understand That God’s Plans & Your Plans Are Different
Sometimes we want God to bless our own personal plans and dreams. Sometimes we incorrectly expect God to fulfill our own will rather than His divine will for our lives.
However, it’s not always the case that our personal plans are identical to what God has planned for our individual lives. God does not work according to our plans but He works according to His own divine and perfect will.
Isaiah 55:8-9 says the following: “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. 9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts”.
Therefore the architect of your purpose in life does not come from you. Your purpose in life comes from God.
Your purpose and meaning in life will be revealed as you willingly desire to submit yourself to God’s plans and not to your own personal plans.
Proverbs 3:5-6 says: Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.

3) Your Purpose Is Discovered By Faith & Not By Sight
The purpose that God has for you may not make sense to other people. However, if it’s God’s plan for your life, you do not live according to what man sees but according to what God says.
Therefore your true purpose will always be aligned with God’s word & God’s principles.
Romans 10:17 says: So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
God may give you the vision, but He might not give you the method by which the vision will be accomplished. Instead God will progressively, step-by-step reveal to you His plan and His method by which you will fulfil your purpose as you walk in faith with Him.
In Genesis 37-50, Joseph had dreams from God that his family would one day bow down to him in respect. Joseph’s dream was misunderstood by his family, especially by Joseph’s brothers. However, even though God revealed the dream to Joseph, God did not reveal to Joseph the horrible events that must take place in his life before the vision is fulfilled.
Therefore sometimes the journey to fulfilling your purpose in life will have challenges but sometimes God will not reveal them to you but instead He will use the challenges you face to help you spiritually grow and equip you to accomplish His purpose for your life.
Habakkuk 2:4 NKJVThen the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision, And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. 3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry. 4 “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith.

 

You CANNOT Find Your Purpose Without Jesus Christ
Attempting to find meaning and purpose for your life apart from a relationship with God is a mistake. A life lived without Christ is not a life – it is only an existence. Jesus said in John 10:10 “… I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly”.
Our God-given purpose gives what we do in life an eternal purpose and the rewards are eternal in nature.
Matthew 6:19-21 NKJV“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”.

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). “God be merciful to me a sinner” (Luke 18:13).
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God
Why not make your eternal decision NOW?

We become born again Christians through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26)

This prayer is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
I repent of all of my sins and I ask You to cleanse me Jesus.
Thank You for forgiving my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I make You my Lord and Savior – Amen”
Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article. If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

acceptJesus1

 

Qualities of a Good Church Leader

“Pastor Impregnates Girlfriend, Dumps Her”; “Prophet Causes Couple to Divorce”; “Pastor Says He Is Worth Millions”; “Prophet Convinces Congregation to Eat Grass”; “Pastor Supports Homosexuality”; “Prophet Performs Miracle Abortion”; “Pastor Embezzles Church Funds”; “Bishop Marries 9 Wives”;
These are the sort of headline news and scandals that continue to increase regarding church leaders around the world. It is the sort of news that brings shame and disgrace to true Christians and most importantly these kind of stories and scandals about church leaders disgrace the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. When church leaders are ruled by sinful and hypocritical nature it in many ways also inhibits unbelievers from coming to a knowledge of the truth regarding the word of God because of the hypocritical behavior that unbelievers may witness from various so-called church leaders.

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READ Titus 1:6, 7 and 1 Timothy 3:2-7

The Bible specifically mentions the kind of qualities and characteristics that a church leader must have in order to lead people within the church.
Whether that leader is a pastor, a prophet, an elder, a deacon, a teacher etc, God desires that leaders be above reproach and that they lead an exemplary life that glorifies God and speaks of the virtues what it means to be part of the kingdom of God.

Therefore according to scripture, the qualities of a good church leader are as follows:

1. A Church Leader Must Be Above Reproach. (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:6)
The word “reproach” is defined as: disgrace or shame eg (he brought reproach upon his family).
Therefore a church leader must not bring disgrace or shame to the church or to God by his/her sinful behavior.

2. A Church Leader Must Be The Husband of One Wife (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:6)
A church leader must only have one spouse. A church leader cannot be polygamous. He/she must be devoted and faithful to his/her spouse. Therefore adultery is forbidden and is grounds for disqualifying a person from church leadership.

3. A Church Leader Must Be a Good Manager of His Own Household (1 Timothy 3:4,5; Titus 1:6)
A church leader must be able to manage and lead his own home before he/she can lead a church. According to scripture, a church leader’s children must be submissive and not unruly. Paul clearly states “for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? (1 Timothy 3:5)”.

4. A Church Leader Must Be Sober-Minded & Self-Controlled (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:8)
To be sober-minded means to be rational; sensible; to have a sound / clean mind. A good church leader should not be prone to irrational thoughts and behavior. A church leader must show good mental and emotional balance. He/she must be disciplined and self-controlled.

5. A Church Leader Must Not Be Arrogant or Quick Tempered (Titus 1:7😉
A good church leader must be humble. Church leaders should not boast about themselves. Humility is a fruit and characteristic of the Holy Spirit. Therefore a good church leader is led by the Holy Spirit and as such reflects the nature of God in his/her behavior.

6. A Church Leader Must Be Hospitable & Able to Teach (1 Timothy 3:2)
A good church leader is friendly and welcoming to visitors, guests or strangers. A good church leader is approachable and does not distance him/herself from those whom he/she leads.
A good church leader must also be a good teacher. He should teach not only with words but also by actions.

7. A Church Leader Must Not Be a Drunkard, Nor Violent, Nor Quarrelsome (1 Timothy 3:3)
God does not accept it when a church leader is influenced or intoxicated by alcohol. The Lord does not accept drunkenness from His followers. Church leaders must not be addicted to any type of substance that negatively influences one’s mental, emotional and spiritual state.
God also expects that church leaders promote peace and not violence. The gospel promotes love and not hate. Therefore church leaders through their sermons and teachings should never promote violence or hatred between people.

8. A Church Leader Must Not Be Greedy For Gain Nor A Lover of Money (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7)
The preaching of the false doctrine that is called the “prosperity gospel” has enriched many church leaders and brought many of them to celebrity status. The wealth of such preachers has been amassed through the monetary contributions and “seeding” of many of their unsuspecting followers who through deception and belief of a false doctrine blindly give their money to leaders who only seek to enrich themselves because of greed.

9. A Church Leader Must Be A Lover of Good, Upright & Holy (Titus 1:8)
A church leader’s morals, virtues and values must originate from God. Such values, morals and virtues must also be founded upon the word of God and it is through God’s word that we can also differentiate between what is good and what is evil. Therefore a church leader must live his/her life according to the sound teaching of God’s word.
It has become a worrying factor for example, when various church leaders are now supporting homosexuality yet God’s word teaches us to hate sin but to love what is good.
Church leaders are expected to walk in integrity and holiness and to promote by example a lifestyle that is pleasing to God and is in obedience to His word.

10. A Church Leader Must Not Be A Recent Convert (1 Timothy 3:6)
Getting a recent convert to become a church leader can be likened to getting a new born child to become a parent. The process of life just doesn’t work that way.
Just like a child must develop from childhood to adulthood, a recent convert is still spiritually immature and therefore needs guidance and teaching until a time when they are spiritually mature.
A recent convert therefore cannot be spiritually equipped or mature to fulfill or deal with leadership challenges. Also, for a recent convert, the taste of power and authority over others may corrupt the mind or influence negatively.

11. A Church Leader Must Teach Sound Doctrine Rebuke Those Who Contradict It. (Titus 1:9)
A good church leader does not sit on the fence on various life issues. Rather a good church leader must boldly teach the truth and rebuke those who contradict the truth. A number of church leaders prefer to sit on the fence on issues such as homosexuality, abortion and sex for example. They prefer to be popular with people by preaching what people want to hear instead of preaching the truth of God’s word. The truth is sometimes painful to hear and it is not always accepted with open arms – however, according to scripture, the truth will set us free.

12. A Church Leader Must Have a Good Testimony and Well Thought Of (1 Timothy 3:7)
It is obviously impossible for everyone to like a certain church leader. However in the life of a good church leader it means that there is no credible witness to an ongoing sinful behavior.

 

Conclusion
Therefore in a world were false teachers and false prophets are on the increase, it is very important that we show discernment and understand what the word of God says about the type of leaders that we should follow.
Ultimately God is our Leader and what God says in His word is more important than any earthly leader.

 

How To Seek God’s Will (Part 4) – Wisdom, Knowledge & Understanding

In the first part of the series of How To Seek God’s Will (Part 1), I summarized that in order to discover God’s will or purpose for your life we need to do the following:

  1. READ, STUDY & MEDIATE GOD’S WORD
  2. SPEND TIME WITH GOD
  3. ASK GOD FOR WISDOM, KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING IN YOUR LIFE
  4. DON’T LEAN ON YOUR OWN UNDERSTANDING
  5. TRUST GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART & HAVE FAITH IN HIM
  6. COMMIT ALL YOUR PLANS TO HIM FIRST AND SEEK HIS GUIDANCE THROUGH HIS WORD AND BY HIS SPIRIT.
  7. LEARN TO LISTEN, RECOGNISE AND OBEY HIS VOICE

Therefore in Part 4 we will focus on (3) ASK GOD FOR WISDOM, KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING IN YOUR LIFE.

Proverbs 24:3-4 ESV
By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; 4 by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.

If we are to know and practice God’s plan for our lives then there are 3 characteristics which we must have in life. These 3 are Knowledge, Understanding and Wisdom.
Having knowledge alone is not enough. We cannot be effective in our life if we only seek knowledge and yet do not seek Understanding and Wisdom.

Colossians 1:9-11 ESV
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.

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What is Knowledge ?
Knowledge is facts, information, and skills acquired about subjects / issues through learning, experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.

Proverbs 18:15 ESV
An intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

It is important to note that there are 2 kinds of knowledge. There is

  1. Man’s Knowledge. The knowledge of man / or the knowledge that comes from the world
  2. God’s Knowledge. There is the knowledge of God / the knowledge that comes from God

The knowledge that comes from Man can be full of errors and is limited in scope and depth. For example, unbiblical teachings about evolution or the big bang theory are examples of man attempting to have knowledge of issues whilst excluding God from the issues. For as long as God is not part of the thought process, such knowledge will be limited, full of errors and at times conflicting.
However the knowledge that comes from God is without error and is unlimited. God’s knowledge is truth. God is omniscient; He knows everything.

Therefore as we seek to know God’s plan for our lives, we must not seek God’s will through information that comes from the world or from man.
However we must seek God’s will through

  • Information and knowledge that comes from the LORD
  • By seeking to have a better knowledge of who God is and the role He plays in our lives
  • By realizing that all true knowledge comes from God and that God alone is all-knowing
  • By yielding or abiding in the Holy Spirit who will lead us into all truth
  • By remembering that man’s knowledge is limited, therefore the best advice and course of action you can take in relation to your life direction must come from God.

Knowledge is only part of the equation to knowing God’s direction for your life. If knowledge does not come with understanding or wisdom then such knowledge becomes ineffective.

What is Understanding ?
The quality or condition of one who is able to comprehend. It is when one has insight, perception and discernment.

Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Understanding can come in 2 of the following ways:

  1. Man’s Understanding. The understanding that is humanistic or comes from man
  2. God’s Understanding. The understanding that comes from God and is of God.

True Understanding is the ability to see things through God’s eyes and from God’s perspective.
The understanding / comprehension that is worldly or humanistic will always be flawed and incomplete.
Since God is all-knowing or has unlimited knowledge, this also means that God understands everything and there is nothing that can baffle or bewilder God.

Proverbs 1:5 ESV
Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance,

Therefore as we seek to find out God’s will for our lives

  • We must not lean on our own understanding or comprehension of situations, events or problems in our life. We must however trust in God and lean on God’s understanding.
  • We must remember that God understands all things and God’s perception and perspective of all situations and circumstances is always very clear before Him. Therefore there is nothing that can hide or is hidden before God.
  • We must view our lives and situations through God’s eyes. The Bible is a great place to start.
  • Man’s understanding and perception of issues is flawed, therefore man does not ever see the big picture. God’s understanding and perception however is perfect and He sees everything and every situation with full clarity.
  • When we see our life from God’s perspective, we see our life as it truly is and not by what the world or man may define it.

Knowledge and Understanding alone should not be the goal of our life. We must also seek Wisdom.

What is Wisdom ?
Wisdom is the application of Knowledge and Understanding. Therefore we must be doers; we must walk the talk; we must apply in our lives what we profess to believe; Wisdom is the application of God’s word in our lives. When we apply the word of God in our lives, we become effective and therefore prove that we are indeed wise.

Proverbs 24:14
Know that wisdom is such to your soul; if you find it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off.

There are 2 types of Wisdom. These are

  1. The wisdom of man / human wisdom
  2. The wisdom of God / God’s wisdom

Human wisdom very rarely is aligned with God’s word or with God’s values. Human wisdom eliminates God from its decisions or conclusions. Human wisdom whilst appearing good and right to the undiscerning eye is always flawed and will eventually be problematic.
God’s wisdom leads to fulfillment and is without error. According to Proverbs 24:14, if you find wisdom, “there will be a future and your hope will not be cut off”.
Therefore acquiring wisdom is very important for one to have proper direction in life and in order to make good decisions.

If you lack wisdom in your life, simply ask God, believe and you will receive it.
James 1:5-8 ESV
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

 

Overcome Analysis Paralysis

Have you ever had an exciting idea? Perhaps you had an exciting vision to start a business; or you would like to do something charitable. However somewhere between the conception of your idea and its implementation, you begin to doubt whether your vision will work at all. Suddenly you begin to think of all the pros and cons; Suddenly you begin to focus more on the fear of failing to accomplish your vision; You over-think the negatives of your vision so much that you do not end up implementing your idea. You also become discouraged by the economic and the political climate. Therefore, what once started as an exciting vision full of potential and promise, eventually becomes a dead one.
I read somewhere that major corporations like Microsoft, FedEX, General Electric, Revlon, Burger King and HP were started in the middle of a recession. And we would all agree that these successful corporations have a plentiful – and profitable – harvest over many years. Therefore your external environment is never an excuse for one to become paralysed when it comes to positive decision making.

Why then, for some of us, do we allow our visions to die? Could it be a lack of faith due to Analysis Paralysis?

Hebrews 11:1 ESV.
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

Paralysis of analysis or analysis paralysis is defined as the state of over-analyzing (or over-thinking) a situation, or citing sources, so that a decision or action is never taken, in effect paralyzing the outcome. A decision can be treated as over-complicated, with too many detailed options, so that a choice is never made, rather than try something and change if a major problem arises. A person might be seeking the optimal or “perfect” solution upfront, and fear making any decision which could lead to erroneous results, when on the way to a better solution.

Romans 1:17 NKJV
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”

God wants His children to live by faith. Often the enemy of faith is fear. Sometimes a person can be afraid to act in faith because he/she has been overcome by fear of failure. When a person is governed by fear instead of faith, such a person will not make a decision unless the outcome is 100% foreseen and 100% guaranteed.
However, in life, not everything is 100% guaranteed. Only God fully knows the outcome of all things because only God is all-knowing. Which is why our faith should NOT be in ourselves or in our money or in other people, but our faith should be in God alone because only God knows all things and only God can foresee all things before they happen.

Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.

If you are to overcome the problem of analysis paralysis in your life, then it is important to trust and have faith in God. It is also imperative to talk to God about your vision, your ideas and your challenges. You will find that as you entrust the Lord with your ideas and concerns, then God will direct you.

Analysis paralysis may often happen in your life when you rely on your own wisdom and on your own understanding. Rather than overthinking your situation, rely on God to direct your path and to open the right doors and opportunities in your life.

TODAY. Have faith in God.

Commit Your Plans to God

Proverbs 16:3 NKJV
Commit your works to the Lord, And your thoughts will be established.

Whenever we enter into a new year, and most people have made their new year’s resolutions. We are excited; we are motivated; we feel a sense that we have a new beginning; and so we set our goals for the year, and hope that this time we will accomplish them and not abort our goals as the year progresses.

The most important thing when establishing your goals in life, is to commit your plans to the God. Proverbs 16:3 teaches that we should commit our plans to God.

  1. Pray and talk to God about the things that you would like to achieve this year.
  2.  And after you have spoken to God, listen to His voice; hear His answer.
  3.  As you proceed to accomplish your goals, let God lead and direct your path.

Proverbs 16:9 NKJV
A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.

If you want to succeed in your goals, you need God to direct you. Without God you can at times make the wrong decisions which may lead you on the wrong path.
God is able to direct you concerning the desires of your heart. God may not always give you what you want, but He will give you what is best for you. He will give you better than what you desire in your heart. However you need to trust Him, that He has plans to prosper you.

Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Remember that this year, God will not do anything to destroy you. His plans for you are perfect.
Also you need to involve God in whatever you desire to do this year, because when you involve Him, it means that you know and believe that only He can direct your life and your steps.

TODAY. Let God lead you.

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