Please understand this. It is not in us to find fulfillment.
If self-help really worked, no one would have any problems because we’d all be able to “fix” ourselves. But we cannot find fulfillment within ourselves, it must come from God.
Consider two contrasting figures in the Bible--King Solomon and the Apostle Paul. King Solomon, the Scriptures tell us, was the richest king in Israel’s storied history. Moreover, he was known to be the wisest man on earth.
Incredibly, he also had 300 wives and 700 concubines. Can you imagine trying to get out of the house to hang out with guys? One thousand women asking, “Where you going?” “Where you going?” “Where you going?” “Where you going?” Where you going?”
In spite of that, if anyone had the opportunity to experience perpetual fulfillment and ultimate satisfaction, it was Solomon. A palace for a home, every pleasure at his fingertips, spectacularly wealthy and powerful; he had it all.
Yet, over and over, we read Solomon’s words in Ecclesiastes, “So now I hate life because everything done here under the sun is so irrational. Everything is meaningless, like chasing the wind.”
Now consider the apostle Paul. He was about as far from wealth and nobility as you could get. Instead of riches, he had poverty. Instead of a kingdom to rule, he was a homeless, itinerant preacher.
Moreover, we read in Scripture that he was beaten with rods, shipwrecked, stoned nearly to death, imprisoned for his faith twice, and given thirty-nine lashes on five different occasions.
Yet, Paul would write from a jail cell, “I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.” ~ Philippians 4:12,13
What’s the message in this? The right starting point is not with yourself no matter how rich you are, how famous you are, or how successful you are. The right starting point is found in God and God alone.
If you have God, even if you have nothing else, you have enough to be fulfilled because the Lord is the one who fills and satisfies.
God created you for a purpose, and you don’t need to guess what it is. Sadly, people have been guessing at the meaning and purpose of life for thousands of years. In fact, Dr. Hugh Moorhead, who was the Chairman at the Department of Philosophy at Northeastern University, wrote to 250 well-known “writers and thinkers” and asked them, “What is the purpose of life?”
In his book, The Meaning of Life: According to our Century’s Greatest Writers and Thinkers, he published the results of his research. Some offered their best guesses. Some admitted they made up a purpose in life. Some even stated they didn’t have any idea as to what the purpose of life was. And some were in the same boat as Isaac Asimov who wrote, “As far as I can see, there is no purpose.”
Those are tragic responses. Life without purpose isn’t a life worth living. It is no coincidence that as our society moves further from God the suicide rate has gone up. According to the American Journal of Public Health suicide is now the number one cause of death by injury.
You can go into any bookstore, even Christian bookstores, and find hundreds of books that talk about discovering your life’s purpose. They all basically say the same thing. “You’ve got to invent your purpose. You’ve got to create your own purpose in life and then go for it!”
Now don’t get me wrong, many of those books are filled with good advice. But getting good advice is nowhere near the same as understanding what your purpose in life is!
We were made by God. We were made for God, and we were put here for His purposes. Until we understand that, no matter what we read to the contrary, life is not going to make sense.
Since God created us, we don’t need to guess at our life’s purpose. We simply need to ask our Creator. For example, let’s say I handed you an envelope and told you that I have placed a special message inside of it just for you. Would you spend the next couple years trying to guess what the message was, or would you open up the envelope and read it?
The answer is obvious.
When it comes to discovering your purpose, it works the same way. (By the way, the message in the envelope I had for you simply reads, “You’re awesome!” but you knew that already.)
God created you. He has a plan for you. You discover that plan by asking Him, by coming to Him in prayer, and seeking His will through His Word.
Are you ready to give that a try? If so, be prepared for some amazing answers!