What have we learned? 40 days of Purpose
The Purpose Driven Life – Summary
“Remember today what you have learned about the Lord through your experiences with him.” Deut. 11:2 (tev)
Congratulations—you made it through the 40 days! A lot has happened during the past 4o days… but our Lord is more interested in what we’ve learned and what we are going to do as a result…
Today, we’re going to look at “what we’ve learned.” we’ll hear some testimonies and share a review of the wonderful truths God has given us during the 40 days of purpose
What have we learned…
“God is the one who made all things, and all things are for his glory.
He wanted to have many children share his glory...” Heb. 2:10a (ncv)
“Everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.” Col. 1:16 (msg
2. That God has a purpose for every believer.
1. That life is preparation for eternity
“God has planted eternity in the human heart.”
Eccl. 3:11 (nlt)
"the Lord has made everything for his purpose." Pr. 16:4 (nlt)
I was.... Planned for God’s pleasure …worship… formed for God’s family… fellowship… created to become like Christ… discipleship … shaped to serve God… ministry …made for a mission…evangelism
1. That we grow through making commitments "faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead." James 2:17 (niv)
2. That we grow through fellowship “as iron sharpens iron, so people can improve each other.” Pr. 27:17 (ncv)
“Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard... And the God of peace will be with you.” Phil. 4:9 (nrsv)
** this is even true when we are far away…the body is big and others are being led into the same things…
1. That people are hungry for spiritual truth “look around you! Vast fields of human souls are ripening all around us, and are ready now for reaping.” John 4:35 (lb)
“now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” John 13:17 (niv) .
“live life with a due sense of responsibility, not as those who do not know the meaning of life but as those who do.” Eph. 5:15 (ph) “now that we're on the right track, let's stay on it!” Phil. 3:16 (msg)
“now I want you to tell these same things to followers who can be trusted to tell others.” 2 Tim. 2:2b (cev) “I thank my God through Jesus Christ for every one of you because the news of your faith is spreading throughout the whole world.” Rom. 1:8 (gw)
Before you begin planning all the things you want to be and do in life, there's one thing you should know:
You are not in control! God is!
Just as there are natural principles like the law of gravity that govern our physical environment, there are moral principles that govern the universe, and spiritual principles that govern human growth and effectiveness—and they exist independent of our knowledge or acceptance of them.
Because spiritual principles govern human effectiveness, they define our ability to produce the results we want and to achieve the things that are most important to us.
What do you value?
The first thing to determine is- what is important to God. The first and foremost concern of God is the glory of God. In other words, the chief end of God is the same as the chief end of man- to glorify God and enjoy himself forever. This is the most righteous purpose in the universe. Loving God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength involves being jealous for and valuing his glory above all else.
Think about the things that are most important to you. The words listed below may help stimulate your thinking. Things that are important to you are values. They are powerful motivators that influence our choices, habits and lifestyles. Ask yourself if what you value lines up with what God values.
Values are different from principles
The more closely our values align with principles, the more effective we will be.
As you just learned, values are the things that are important to us. Principles, on the other hand, are guidelines for human conduct that are proven to have enduring, permanent value because they manifest God’s purposes in our lives. If our values do not align with principles, they may prevent the spirit of God from producing the results we seek in our lives.
The "law of the farm" teaches that a successful harvest must be preceded by timely planting and on-going care (watering, weeding, etc.). A similar principle applies in our lives. Things of true value take time and nourishment. There’s no "quick fix" for healthy, lasting, relationships with God ( or in a marriage, family or elsewhere). If we neglect them now, we can’t expect positive results later.
Aligning your life to principles
For many people, words like the ones listed below represent Godly principles. Think about your life. Which principles have impacted you directly? Are there any principles that you particularly value or to which you want to more closely align your life?
Select words that represent principles to which you wish to align your life more closely.
Consider the life of Christ
If you carefully consider the life of Christ, you will see that his life was perfectly aligned with his principles.
What is character?
The qualities that you admire about Christ are various aspects of his character. It is what distinguishes him as who he is- the unique son of the living God, the fullness of the Godhead bodily. Our character is what we take with us to heaven.
You have the opportunity to let God develop your character to be as admirable as is the character of Christ.! What an amazing promise! Romans 8:29 says that is what we were designed for from the foundation of the world. . As you work through these purpose statement building exercises, carefully consider your own character and your vision for your life, and begin seeing God’s plan for moving you in the direction he wants you to go: to become Christlike.
Consider your strengths and talents:
Everyone has strengths and talents that enable them to do certain things and to make a contribution in life. Consider your strengths and talents--those that others recognize in you, as well as any strengths that others may not see. Focus on your shape-spiritual gifts, heart, abilities, personality and experiences- all are uniquely woven together in a poiema- the workmanship of God. Note that your shape is not static- it grows and is conformed into Christlikeness in the process of sanctification.
What's in your way?
Just as you have a specific shape that enable you to do certain things, you may have habits that prevent you from being the person God wants you to be. These are things the bible says to put off, be done with, to reckon as dead.
Consider your habits and tendencies. Which ones might prevent you from realizing your purpose? Select no more than three.
Think in terms of relationships
Another way to think about your life is in terms of who is important to you. Identify four relationships you consider to be significant in your life. Describe how you can fulfill the great commission and the great commandment in relation to others.
Project yourself forward in time
Use your imagination to visualize an accounting of your life. What words would God use to describe his thoughts and feelings about you on that occasion? Select up to 3 words God would use to describe you.
Your personal purpose statement
The information you've just provided is ready to compile into a first draft of your mission statement. Remember, this is only a rough draft. Take time to review and personalize it even more. Remove, rephrase, and add thoughts or ideas with particular meaning to you. Make it inspirational! Continually work to detect and refine your purpose.
Sample personal purpose statement
To fulfill my God given purpose in life I will:
* lead a life centered around God by practicing the principles of patience, humility, integrity, and service.
* remember what's important in life is purpose of life, worship, relationships, truth, and learning.
* revere admirable characteristics in Christ, such as being faithful, forgiving, giving, trustworthy, truthful, and selfless, and attempt to see the Spirit implement similar characteristics in my own life.
* recognize my shape and allow God to develop it as a person who is generous, grateful, a teacher, imaginative, discerning, and a writer.
* humble myself by confessing that I can be prideful, reactive, and vague and by constantly striving to allow the spirit to transform my weaknesses into strengths by repentance.
* envision myself becoming a person who God thinks is faithful, loyal, and responsible.
* share my life with others by passionately desiring that all people know of the riches of the glory of God.
To fulfill my God given purpose on earth, I will…
P pursue the glory of God by purposefully seeking -------------
U understand that what is most important in life is---------------
R recognize that my role in the body of Christ is to------------------
P practice glorifying God in all I do by implementing the principles of----------------
O overcome my weaknesses by being transformed by the spirit in the areas of my-------
S serve Christ and his body based on my shape- my spiritual gifts of ---, my heart of---, my abilities in---, my ------------personality, and my experiences in------------
E enjoy God forever by exploring and exalting in his attributes of -------------
See the book page 317 for other examples and samples. Come prepared to share your purpose statement with the group next week!