This week I woke up one morning thinking about an intriguing phrase contained in this statement by Paul to the Colossians:
…to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me (Colossians 1:27-29 NASB).
Wow. Paul knew what his purpose in life was! He realized he had a mission to proclaim Christ and make disciples, and he also recognized that God’s mighty power within him was enabling him to fulfill that mission.
So, what is YOUR mission and MY mission? Do we, like Paul, have a clear answer to that question?
Of course, to some extent our mission should be exactly the same as Paul’s – the Great Commission given to every Christian. However, in other ways, our purpose is a unique and personalized calling the Lord has given us. For example, Paul and Peter were contemporaries and both were apostles. Yet they didn’t have the exact same focus and calling.
A few more thoughts…
- Paul said he had been given a “high calling” and “upward call of God” (Philippians 3:14). In the same way, we should recognized that we’re called to go HIGHER! We must resist the temptation to settle for a LOW or substandard Christian life.
- Acts 13:36 says David “served the purpose of God in his own generation.” That should be our objective too! In each generation, God has certain things that are particularly on His heart. Do we know what He desires to do in this generation?
- For each of us, there are SEASONS for how God’s calling is being walked out in our lives (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, Ecclesiastes 8:5). For example, when we’re raising young children we must inevitably give that responsibility a great deal of our time and attention.
- As you pursue your calling and try to discern the season of life you’re in, it’s important not to forget a vital principle found in the Westminster Shorter Catechism. When asked “What is the chief end of man?” the correct answer is “To glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever” (1 Corinthians 10:31). If you aren’t glorifying God with your life – and truly enjoying your relationship with Him – you’ll inevitably find yourself frustrated and unfulfilled.
I encourage you to prayerfully write a personalized mission statement like Paul did, ending with his conclusion: “for this purpose I labor.”
Psalm 84:5 promises, “Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, whose heart is set on pilgrimage.” May you be blessed with a joyful pilgrimage toward your high calling!