I like to watch people living their purpose. The person who was born to sing and finds satisfaction in singing everywhere, in public and in private; the artist who loves to paint and finds great satisfaction and expression in blessing people through his or her creative gifting. My housekeeper who makes things shine better than I can, and organizes my life to make it easier and more effective. People living in their purpose not only bless those around them but also the larger community benefits from their gifts that are freely given.
Yet, I’ve seen people with great gifts not living out their purpose. I saw this often while working as a career counselor. People wanted help and direction for their career choices, but they were so emotionally weighted down with negative emotions such as depression or anxiety that they could not see to focus on their God given gifts and potential. One of the reasons that I became a therapist was so that I could learn how to help people that were stuck. Over the years, I’ve noticed that once people see the patterns and habits in their lives which caused them to become emotionally stuck, they are able to identify the patterns and then with God’s help move forward. Here are a few simple principles to help you to cultivate the purpose that God has placed inside of you.
Remember, that living your purpose starts with understanding that you were created for a purpose! He has a plan for every season and stage of your life when you are submitted to Him. Jeremiah 29:11-13 1 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Negative emotions, such as depression, anger and anxiety can often paralyze people and keep them stuck. It is always helpful to process these feelings with a safe person or a professional and to look at where these emotions are coming from. Often times they come from a painful pain, a difficult childhood, past regrets or impaired thinking. Many times people want to avoid looking at these feelings because they are painful. However, working through the pain is often the road map to experiencing freedom and emotional health, resulting in new revelations and awareness of ourselves and a new freedom which leads to a more purposeful and productive life.
Engage in reflective thinking. It is important to get away from our over stimulated society and cultivate a relationship with the living God. This means practicing the spiritual discipline of prayer. Prayer is simply acknowledging who God is with a heart of respect and gratitude and then expressing your concerns to Him. He is personal, and desires a real relationship with you. Philippians 4:6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.