If it were possible for me, a man entering into the back-half of his 30s, to go back in time and offer just one piece of advice to himself when he was in his 20s, what would that be?
Without fail, I continue to land on the same unimpressive, yet extremely important (and needed) answer:
While you’re in pursuit of tomorrow’s purpose, don’t forget about today’s priorities.
The pursuit of purpose is certainly not a new idea to any of us (Christian or not). It’s one of those seemingly timeless quests and requests among the human race that never seems to grow old or wear out. One generation after the next, as vastly different as we are from one another in most things like culture, clothes, hairstyles, tastes of music and the like, are connected by the same instinctive heart cry of “Why Am I Here?”
When you think about it, the uncontrollable bent within us to discover our calling shouldn’t come as a surprise as we are all the literal creative offspring of none other than the Great Creator Himself. Everything He made came with purpose attached: the sun to give light during the day, the moon to provide light at night, birds to fly, fish to swim, mankind to rule and reign (see Genesis 1:26-28) and the list goes on. I believe “the greatest tragedy in life is not death, but a life without purpose (Myles Munroe)”. For this reason, I’ve made it my mission help others find their God-given reason for breathing because I believe to find your purpose is to find (your) “true” life.
Lately, however, I’ve had an awakening that’s brought me face-to-face with an often overlooked, yet vital reality: when it comes to purpose, TODAY is just as important as TOMORROW. We know what it is to view and pursue purpose from the standpoint of “tomorrow (the future), but when it comes to “today” (the “present) we seem to continuously fall short. I’d like to suggest that the overemphasis we’ve placed on what’s ahead of us has, in many ways, caused us to neglect what’s right in front us. And, herein lies a major potential cause for many of the “delays” and “denials” we’ve voiced over the timing of fulfillment concerning our destinies. Although we’ve learned how to temporarily numb ourselves from feeling “overdue” with statements like, “God’s delays are not God’s denials”, the truth is we feel overdue because we are overdue. There’s good news, however. Delayed deliveries are not aborted deliveries. The promises, prophecies, plans, and purposes are still very much alive. It’s just that there’s comes a point where a certain threshold of time is crossed and what you’ve been waiting on is now waiting on you.
Stop pursuing tomorrow’s purposes and start stewarding today priorities.
I don’t know about you, but the greater portion of my days aren’t filled with burning bushes, or seas parting, or heaven breaking open in the sky, or angels manifesting themselves to hand-deliver God’s messages to me. No, they look more like washing the dishes, folding the laundry, meeting deadlines at work, having lunch with a friend, writing a blog, going to the gym, or playing with my daughter. So, what about the “future” I see in my heart to be “a world-changing speaker, trainer, teacher, and author”, “to have influence with influencers”, “to build great wealth in every area of my life”, “to travel the globe”, or “to be the ‘go to’ transformational leader that nations call when in a crisis”? What do I do with them? What do you do with yours? What do we do when we see ourselves traveling and changing the world and the farthest we’ve traveled this year is the grocery store and the greatest change we’ve brought is that of a diaper or pull-up?
RELATED: The Danger of a Work-Driven Life
You realize that where you are (the present) is the path to where you’re going (the future) so steward it accordingly.
How you handle today has everything to do with what you’ll hold tomorrow. Respond by stewarding your present commitments with the same excellence, resilience, and passion that you would if they were your future appointments. If it’s possible “by faith, to speak those things that are not as though they already were”, then it stands to reason that we can also “treat those things that are not as they already were”.
Finally Beloved, I leave you with this:
“He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. “Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you? “And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? (Luke 16:10-12 NASB)