I love a good adventure… hitting the open road… taking to the skies… Meeting new people, tasting delicacies I’ve never heard of before, breathing in the beauty of the architecture and natural wonders of the world, and trying new things which push me outside my comfort zone (Helmet diving, anyone? I highly recommend it!). I feel like I could travel forever and never get bored of it. There’s always more to discover.
Life is much like this. A daily quest to fulfil our destiny (purpose) here on earth, whilst also yearning for our final destination… our heavenly home… free of the pains and discomforts of this world which challenge us so much.
Let’s start at the
beginning END. Just as knowing my destination helps me to know what to pack for a trip, so too, recognising our eternal destination gives meaning and guidance, shaping how we live in the here and now.
Our eternity is impacted by our response to the GOSPEL (or good news – it is the story which gives us the freedom to choose to spend our forever with God or apart from Him).
If you’ve stumbled across this website, and perhaps haven’t given a lot of thought to your eternity, I’d encourage you to do this:
- Have a read of the ‘gospel’ story below
- Ask God to show you if He is indeed real (You don’t need fancy words. You don’t need to be in a church building. Just right where you are, say, “God, if you’re out there, show me”.
- Wait, ponder and consider… then decide, what do you want your eternity to look like? Only you can make that decision (It’s not up to your family or friends. It’s not something you’re ‘born with’).
- If you decide you want Jesus to be part of your future, there’s a simple prayer below, which you can pray. Then, perhaps reach out and find some other people who love Jesus too and ask them to help you to learn more.
The GOSPEL in a nutshell:
G – God created us to be in relationship with Him (to be a part of His family). Right back in the beginning, He created Adam and Eve and placed them in a beautiful garden where they could enjoy each other’s company (Genesis 1 & 2). Their life was good – all their needs were met and they lived without any kind of darkness/evil.
O – Our sins separated us from God (Genesis 3). He asked Adam and Eve not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, for as a loving Father He wanted to protect them from having to experience anything bad in life. But, they were tempted by the devil, ate from the tree and suddenly experienced the consequences of sin (Sin is just doing things our own way instead of God’s) including feeling guilty, ashamed and distant from their loving God. The beautiful relationship that they’d with Him became damaged, and this brokenness continued on in every generation thereafter (hence why we have to choose for ourselves how we’ll live) (Joshua 24:15 and Romans 3:23 & 5:12-14).
S – Sin can’t be taken away by us doing good deeds (being ‘good people’) or making sacrifices/payments (Genesis 4, Psalm 51:16, Ephesians 2:8-9). Try as we might, we can’t fix this problem on our own.
P – Paying the price for sin was a role only Jesus could play. When He died on the cross, and rose again, He dealt with our sin, building a bridge between us and God, allowing our relationship to be restored (John 19:30, Romans 5:8, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
E – Everyone who accepts, trusts and confesses (says they believe) in Jesus will regain their relationship with God and have eternal life with Him (John 3:16, 5:24 & 14:6, Acts 2:21, and Romans 10:9-10). To do this, we can say a simple prayer, such as:
L – Life with Christ is ours today and forevermore – and it is a wonderful, abundant life! (John 10:10)
If you choose to be a Jesus-follower, you get to have Him in your life every day, helping you through all that your journey brings. Also, you are promised that He is making a forever home in heaven for you to be with Him! That is your eternal destiny!
Our earthly destiny is often thought of as some spectacular thing.
Heading up an international mission, a highly successful franchise or a mega-church. Using entrepreneurial skills to bring clean water and sanitation to an entire third-world nation.
Big goals. Noteworthy measures of success.
Wonderful endeavours, but if we look first at the task, rather than the task master (God), we’ll aim for completion, rather than relationship, and in doing so we’ll miss everything that really matters.
We must, ‘…seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Setting our mind and keeping focused habitually on the things above [the heavenly things], not on things that are on the earth [which have only temporal value]. (Colossians 3:1-2)
Doing this will allow us to not overcomplicate things, nor be paralysed by a fear or failure, or a sense of being ill-equipped or overwhelmed, unsure of where to begin.
Our earthly destiny (or top priority or purpose) is to: Love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love our neighbours as ourselves (which also implies that we need to love ourselves first!) (Mark 12:28-31) and to walk in our God-given authority, making disciples, baptising them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and teaching them to be obedient to Jesus (Matthew 28:18-20. See also Acts 20:24).
Our destiny and our identity as Daughters of the King is unchanging, yet the expression of this may look different as we go through various seasons in life. We can easily misplace our identity in our careers or roles, rather than wholly in Christ, when we confuse our occupations with our destiny. Having a deep understanding of this is so important, to ensure that we don’t get shaken by change and find ourselves wondering, ‘Who am I?’. I’ve experienced this ‘lost’ feeling myself at times with changes in direction in my employment, and I’ve seen others struggle throughout different stages and circumstances in life (alternate jobs due to COVID, navigating singledom; being a wife, mother, empty-nester, or grey-nomad; working in the home or in the marketplace…). It’s important to remember that our good works are not our destiny but rather they arise from it (Ephesians 2:10). While we’re to live a life worthy of our calling (Ephesians 4:1-6), at the end of the day, God is looking for a lover not a performer. How beautiful it is to know that God foreknew our days before we breathed even a single breath (Psalm 139:16, Ephesians 1:11). He is the author of our lives, the One who will perfect our faith (Hebrews 12:2), helping us to use our unique gifts and talents in doing the good works He has appointed for us.
Wondrous travels often involve an inexperienced person learning, growing, discovering, trying new things (at times with intrepidation), experiencing joy and enduring hardship. The traveller may arrive home with sore feet, but also a happy and full heart. Destiny is much like this.
Let’s get practical
💐 Grow your knowledge, faith, love, courage and expectancy (Mark 9:23 and Ephesians 3:20)
Check out my previous Journeying with Jesus posts for more on this, and spend time in the Word of God to gain wisdom and direction (Proverbs 14 & 2:6-10).
💐 Prioritise and set healthy boundaries
Say no to the ‘good things’ that will distract you from the ‘God things’ which will have eternal impact (Proverbs 4:25). Don’t take on unnecessary responsibilities. Pray for discernment and confirmation from God about what you are to do – sometimes people tell us He wants us to do a particular thing, when in fact the person just wants to use us to fill a role – that’s not destiny, it’s manipulation. Rest well so that you don’t burnout.
💐 Be grateful for His blessings, protection, provision, restoration and freedom. Enjoy life (Ecclesiastes 8:15).
💐 Embrace trials and suffering as purposeful and let them shape your life for good (Isaiah 43:2, James 1:2-4, 12, Psalm 27:14, Romans 5:3-5).
💐 Don’t rely on worldly wisdom for spiritual understanding.
Be mindful of the tools and resources you access and their limitations. If Moses had completed a personality or spiritual giftings test, it certainly wouldn’t have pegged him as being leadership material (he could barely string a sentence together), yet that’s exactly the role the Lord had for him. As we surrender our weaknesses and permit the Father to work through us in spite of them, through the power of His strength, others get to see Him rather than us (kind of the whole idea!).
💐 Be faithful with what’s in your hand (Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4, 8-10, 1 Peter 4:10, Colossians 3:23)
The widow in 2 Kings only had a small amount of oil, yet when given to God, it was multiplied, paying off her debts, enabling her and her sons to live. What do you have (however small) (a gift or talent, something you’re passionate or knowledgeable about, resources, skills, ideas, time) that you could share with others to bring blessing to their lives and shine the love of Jesus into their world? (Ephesians 5:15-17, (Matthew 16:25, James 1:27). Remember that seemingly insignificant things can have life changing impact when motivated by a heart of love!
Don’t bury what you have been given, saying that you have nothing to offer (Matthew 25:14-30, Luke 19:11-27). This isn’t modesty, it’s waste – if you don’t use what God’s given you, you’re wasting opportunities to reach others for His kingdom. If you can’t see what He’s gifted you in/with, ask Him to show you.
Also, don’t dismiss the things that ‘childhood you’ was stirred by – your Spirit knew then that you were called by God, just as it does now (Jeremiah 1:5). Perhaps it’s time to revive some old dreams, to reignite the passions which spark something in your heart. Have you always felt compassion towards the less-fortunate? Volunteer at a food hall. (Micah 6:8)
💐 Speak truth with kindness and care (Isaiah 55:11)
Show up differently in a world that’s where discouragement, deceitfulness and a lack of integrity are often the norm.
💐 Hold your own plans loosely (Proverbs 19:21)
The simple reality of life is this, as soon as you feel you’ve got all of your ‘ducks in a row’ one of them will step out. Just go with it, be flexible, create margin in your life for change, have an attitude that says, ‘God, how might you surprise me today?’ We really need to let go of our ‘control’ over life and allow God to lead. His plans truly are better than our own!
💐 Trust in God
When the path ahead seems foggy and you’re not quite sure where each step will take you, hold tight to this truth and let it encourage you: “It is the Lord who directs your life, for each step you take is ordained by God to bring you closer to your destiny. So much of your life, then, remains a mystery!” (Proverbs 20:24)
Rather than being discouraged by the mystery, enjoy it just as you might eagerly devour an intriguing novel, waiting to see, ‘What will happen next?’
Scripture references: The Holy Bible (several translations)
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