Written by Jonathan Bremer. Media by Cord Buchanan.
In a world with so many distractions and directions that call out to us, it is not surprising that we struggle to find our purpose. We are given a unique platform or set of gifts and talents by God that we can use to bring Him glory. These things all play a significant role in God’s purpose for our lives, but it is easy to lose sight of these things or even the One who equipped us with our strengths, weaknesses, and talents. Despite this, many people still struggle with finding purpose and value in their lives. For this reason, it is important that we begin to redefine our lives, goals, and God-given abilities through the lens of faith.
When we find ourselves distracted by the kaleidoscopic paths presented to us by the world, we often get caught between a rock and a hard place. As humans, it is very easy to see other’s gifts and pursue those areas because we want to have the same gifts. But when we fail, our focus tends to become narrow and negative. We do not focus on the things we do well in, the gifts that God has given us. We instead highlight and dwell upon the gifts of others that we do not commonly excel at. It becomes a vicious cycle of comparison that is more damaging than good. This is prevalent in every facet of human life, but it is extremely prevalent in our lives as college students. Taylor Harpster, a Senior Digital Media and Worship Arts double major said,
“It is dangerous to compare yourself to others. It often leads to discouragement when you consistently see progress or aptitude in other people, while you don’t make any apparent progress yourself. Rather, I think you should measure your own growth in relation to where you started personally, and where you want to go. Not by other’s talents.”
As human beings, we continually let society dictate what is valuable and thus, our value and
purpose. But the lens the world presents is almost always skewed. There is a point where we must take a step away from the pretty colors presented by the world’s kaleidoscope and get a panoramic view through the lens of our faith. We must check and then redefine the lens we adopt as our own. We must ask ourselves what the Gospel has to say. Jeremiah 29:11-13 says, “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you.”
We are reminded that God has a plan and a purpose for our lives that is good and beautiful. When we have doubts about our purpose, we can ask God for guidance. We can pray for his will and purpose to be done and for both to be revealed to us. It isn’t always easy when we don’t have the end immediately in sight. But if we continue to listen for God’s will and seek His plan and purpose for our lives, we will be surprised at the things that are revealed to us.