Finding your purpose in life: what problem are you solving?


as published in the December 10, 2016 Blytheville Courier News

Some people never change, yet some redefine themselves every day. Cities can be the same way…nothing ever changes. Why? Quite simply, change doesn’t occur until the status quo is too unbearable and uncomfortable for us.

Why do so many people just seem to be angry, mush-brained shells of humanity, walking to and fro like the metaphorical zombie, but absolutely not unique or contributing toward making this world a better place? It is because they do not realize that the purpose of life is to live a life of purpose

Personal fulfillment only comes when you find your God-given purpose. You and I were created for a reason. Everything that has ever been created was created to solve a problem. So, what problem are you solving?

Zig Ziglar once said that we can have anything we want in life, as long as we help enough people get what they want in life. If we find our purpose, we will find the correct people with the correct problem that only we can fix.

What problem were you created to solve? Why do so many people have a hard time finding their purpose? I have a few possible explanations I want to share with you.

First, the overwhelming majority of people look for a vocation rather than a calling. There are hundreds of vocations that I can perform, but only one calling. The difference is this: I have the intelligence and talents to do many tings. Heck, lets just be honest, most vocations are so mundane, repetitive and non-creative that any ol’ monkey can do them.

But your calling, your purpose, your reason for existence is that one thing that you can NEVER be complete or happy unless you fulfill it. Notice I didn’t say the one thing that makes you happiest or that you most enjoy doing. Callings/Purposes are not always fun. But they do make you complete and fulfilled. They also open up opportunities and success that won’t come to you otherwise. As the Bible says, your gift will make room for you!

So, in my personal case I was probably not created by God to be a reporter or an editor (though He blesses it). But He did create me to question, to discern, to debate, to communicate and to stand like an unmovable wall against corruption. He created me to trumpet what is right, in all aspects of the life around me. He created me to fight, and to fight hard, for those that are too weak or unknowledgeable to fight for themselves.

So, I could probably have the vocation of a reporter, author, attorney, civil rights activist, lobbyist, politician or an endless stream of other jobs. But the only way that I will ever find fulfillment and purpose is to fight for others and to fight for what is right. He has gifted me with the ability to look powerful people straight in the eye and call them out when they lie. I recognize that not everyone can do that. But I am most alive when I do.

For others their purpose may be to be a peacemaker or a wealth creator. Others were created to make create artistic expressions that only our inner man fully understands. Others are given the purpose/calling in the area of wisdom (they are the ones that know the difference between a leader and a boss). Some are called to be surrogate angels of mercy (these are teachers and some in the medical field).

I hope that my examples show you that your purpose is ALWAYS bigger than any one job or even a career. Your purpose, when unfolded and lived in, swallows up your entire life and becomes a part oaf who and what you are.

So why don’t people know what their purpose is? There are a couple reasons. The first reason is because most cynics would doubt the very existence of God, much less a God-ordained purpose.

Others have great difficulty thinking that God would have a specific plan for their specific life.

But the most common reason, I believe is because people living today are so “loud” and “busy” that they can never get quiet enough to ponder these issues, hear their inner voice and correct their path.

So I challenge each of you today, to join me this week at least one hour each day, in spending time away from earbuds, cellphones, televisions, radios, video games, Twitter, Facebook, e-mail and other unnecessary stimuli…get quiet and find your purpose! Oh, and yes…sometimes your purpose changes over the course of your life!

For once I agree with Ralph Waldo Emerson, the world’s original hippie, when he said, “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

About Tom Henry 133 Articles

My Biography

I have been fortunate to have held a number of very interesting and diverse jobs over the years. Those jobs have ranged from being a newspaper reporter (twice), restaurant and retail single unit store manager (numerous), restaurant multi-unit manager, a Christian bookstore manager, an online hospitality management recruiter and pastor. I have been used numerous times to turn troubled stores into profitable stores with double digit increases in sales and national top ten rankings (multiple times). God has gifted me with talents, experiences and spiritual gifting that allows me to get “right to the root of the problem” very quickly.

Additionally, I have three college degrees including a Master of Arts in history from Arkansas State University in Jonesboro and Arkansas Northeastern College in Blytheville.

I spend all of my non-work time with the sweetest woman I’ve ever met, Carol. Together we have four children (ranging in age from 19 to 25). She is without a doubt the answer to many years of fervent prayer. I have never been happier than I am now.

In my free time, I enjoy writing, reading, traveling (especially to historic/civil war sites), learning, intellectual discussion and singing/deejaying. Carol and I live an hour north of Memphis and love to go “walking in Memphis, ten feet off of Beale”.

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