As kids we're asked “so what do YOU want to be when you grow up?” When I ask kids this I see a sparkle in their eye as they announce “I want to be a doctor or I want to be a football player.” Their answer may have come from a suggestion, “if you like animals you should be a veterinarian” or maybe mom or dad is a doctor or maybe their answer is all because of a movie they watched about astronauts. As a kid our answer is about the excitement and the adventure to pretend. Our imaginations have no limits.
As teens we're asked the question like this, “So what do you want to do WITH your life.” That sparkle as a kid turns into feelings of pressure and stress. “How am I going to make a living?” “What kind of life am I going to build?” Pressure to figure life out. What collage to go to, what to major in and how to pay for it. As a teen our answer to this question is over shadowed by the many things that need to be planned, that need to happen, and that need to be done to move forward in life. When I was a teen I was so busy my imagination was left without much attention.
When the stage of our lives turn to getting up for work every day, paying our bills and tending to our daily chores our excitement to turn personal dreams into goals feels like...well work. It seems that as we grow for many of us our imaginations fade. Some will go through life holding a variety of jobs. Some will pick and stick with a career. But is there really a point in one’s life when you stop asking yourself “what do I want to be?” For most of us that “question” never really seems to be satisfied. What answer would satisfy it? What need are we deep down wanting to fulfill? Can anyone ever truly say they are content at any stage of live?
As I ask myself, I discover it’s all in how I look at the question. What I “do” to earn a living is not the answer at all to “What do I want to be?” What kind of job I hold may have some say on my bank statement but its how I see myself and feel about myself that has a real chance to satisfy my hearts desires. I’m realizing an inner need to inspire myself and this inner need wants tending to. It is the type of person I am that truly gives me drive and purpose to get out of bed every morning. The more I aim to spread kindness and compassion the more that old sparkle shines though. Do good, feel good...right?! Right now. It’s this moment that I must live in.
“Many of the things we desire are expensive. But the truth is the things that really satisfy us are totally free: love, laughter, and good relationships.”
I found this list of questions awhile back when researching for Wings of Hope. I find them also helpful for finding personal purpose.
Here are some potent questions to get you started:
· What do you teach others simply by being you?
· What would you spend your time on, even if you didn’t get paid to do it?
· What do you find yourself researching and can’t stop yourself from learning more about?
· Is there anything you would consider yourself an expert in? If not, is there anything you’d like to be an expert in?
· What gifts do you have that you’d like to make available to the world?
· What do you want to change?
· What lessons do you often find yourself repeating in life?
· How does your purpose impact your local community? How does it impact your family? Your friends? The world?
What does your tribe (the people you most connect with) look like? What do you identify with on a collective level?
· What legacy do you want to leave behind when you’re gone?
Have you asked yourself... “Do I have purpose?” Because when you stop and think about it, purpose does make life pretty amazing. Remember that even if you’re thinking big, it’s the small things you do every day that make a difference.
Fearlessly walk your path.
Prayer for the week: God You have a divine purpose and design for everything. Rain and snow give water to the earth, bringing forth new Life. Because of this we can eat and drink; in turn, we give You thanksgiving. God, we know You made us on Purpose. This we are certain. We are here on Purpose for You, to do Your Will. Our desire is to please You, to follow You. Our minds are open, our hearts are willing and our bodies are able. Ever Loving Father, we ask you to fill our spirit with Your Holy Spirit so that we may hear and see; do and speak what is pleasing to You. We pray this in Jesus’ name. ~Amen