Finding our purpose
A few years ago, I was having a “parental discussion” with one of my sons. As he was struggling with the situation at hand, I pointed him toward what God had to say about the subject…to which he snapped in frustration, “Does everything have to be about God?”
I honestly can’t blame him for asking. In fact, he verbalized something we all struggle with, but are typically too scared to say out-loud. We don’t want to think about the bigger, God-sized perspective when we’re angry about our current circumstances. We secretly don’t want to admit that we are not the main character in our life’s story. We’re afraid that if we’re not in control of the situation, everything will fall apart…or at least not turn out the way we think would be best for us.
These kinds of questions and struggles are not new. It is part of the sanctification process, part of us growing closer to God after we’ve accepted Jesus as our Savior. Even believers in the first century dealt with the same struggles we face. In his letter to the believers in Colossae, Paul’s solution to these kinds of doubts is to have an accurate view of who Jesus truly is.
Speaking about Jesus, Paul states:
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation;
because by Him everything was created, in heaven and on earth,
the visible and the invisible,
whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities –
all things have been created through Him and for Him.
The fact that Jesus is the One who created everything is explored in these verses. The last line says it clearly – all things have been created through Him. However, I don’t think that any of us believers have a problem accepting that. We look at the magnificent world around us, and understand that it was created. The design and detail we find as we explore creation points us toward an intelligent purpose rather than suggesting the world “happened” by some “random chance”.
However, it’s the last two words of the sentence that give us pause:
all things have been created…for Him
Did anything inside you bristle or pull back, even just a little bit?
With that slight recoil, we’re internally asking, “Does everything have to be about God?”
Because if those two words are true, if all things have really been created for Him, then our perspective on all things will have to change, won’t it? When I’m honest with myself, I worry that I won’t have any say over what happens next if I’m not the most important person in my life-story. I’m not sure of where this new understanding of life will take me. In a word, accepting that all of creation – including my life – was created for Jesus…it scares me.
But let’s take a breath and think through this a moment…
The one who creates is the one who knows the full purpose of his or her creation. Ask any artist, architect, or teacher, and they will tell you how both the design and purpose of their music, their building, or their lessons are intertwined. Each one of them knows the detailed reasons for their creation. Each of them has a specific design and purpose for their creation to fulfill.
Likewise, since we know that we have been created by Jesus – we should also recognize that He knows our purpose.
So don’t bristle, don’t pull back. Even though we may not fully understand, even if the future looks murky…the One who designed us is with us, and He perfectly knows what to do with us. And we can take comfort in the very next verse:
He is before all things, and by Him all things hold together.
We don’t have to be the one to hold all things together, that’s not our job. Instead, we just need to trust the One who created us, the One who created our purpose.
Are we willing to let go and trust that we were created for Him?