We are always living – seems obvious but many people seem to go through most of their life on autopilot. Sure they have hopes and dreams, they have ideas and plans, yet few actually achieve them. With every second that passes we lose time given to us to accomplish and experience various things. Not many people around the world can afford to sit in front of a computer and read articles like this compelling them to live life on purpose. They have a clear purpose – survival. They are not dreaming of riches or retirement, they are hoping to survive another day.
This is not a guilt trip, we are extremely blessed to be living in North America or some other developed nation where opportunities abound. But to whom much is given, much is expected. It is your duty to succeed, and despite the challenges you have faced, they are by no means an excuse.
I grew up in a third world country, and have many relatives who would be thrilled to be offered the chance to live in North America. They do what they can to get by, feed their families, raise their kids – not unlike us over here… but they have very little to aspire in the way of opportunity. In North America, we can aspire to the heights of society, finance, status, fame, etc and with hard work and some help, we can achieve it in our lifetime as a select few have. Sure its slim, but the chance exists.
I feel a responsibility to make the most of my life. Do you? What would a successful life look like to you? Try exploring your dreams beyond the typical riches and fame dream. John Maxwell says “Success is knowing your purpose, growing to reach your maximum potential and sowing seeds that benefit others.”
My definition of success is actively closing the gap between who you are now and who you are supposed to be. The big question is, “What is your purpose?”
Here are some foundational principles on purpose, that apply to any created or invented things or being.
- Everything is life has a purpose.
- Not every purpose is known.
- If you don’t know the purpose of a thing, you will abuse it. (E.g. a surgeon’s scalpel can be used to save or take a life.)
- If you want to know the purpose of a thing, never ask the things.
- The purpose of a thing is only found in the mind of the maker of that thing.
Only the original manufacturer of a car can know the full purpose of the car and each of its components. Only they know the potential and can give correct directions of use. Everyone else is guessing. You won’t find a Ford manual in a Toyota car, neither could you get one to fix the other’s product. (Without voiding the warranty and performance guarantee!)
Purpose, while it may seem obvious is actually hard to pin down. Myles Munroe has put it best:
Purpose is the original intent for the reason of the making of a thing.
Purpose is what caused the maker to make something.
Purpose is what was wanted, that made a maker make a thing.
What a maker made was created to produce what he wanted. What he wanted was purpose, what he made was product. Product comes after purpose and product is created to produce purpose. I know its heavy – but its true.
E.g. Man wanted an easy way to light fire (purpose), so he invented matches (product).
The fact that you exist implies that there was a purpose behind your creation. No, it wasn’t an accident (no matter how you were conceived) and your success in life is determined not by how much you make or spend or what people may say. Success in this life is determined by whether you have fulfilled your purpose, and every second that goes by ought to be spent in the pursuit of that purpose.
In fact succeeding is not so much about achieving, but being on the journey towards what we were born to do. Challenge yourself to live a life of purpose. Seek out that purpose and don’t let people put you in a box! Always Live your Life on Purpose!