Recently as I was driving in the car, listening to one of my favorite podcasts, my heart almost seemed to stop beating. I”m in the zone listening and watching the road. In the next second, I hear the words, “we focus on self-preservation over perseverance.” At that moment those words hit a nerve. I frantically tried to figure out how to write down these words knowing how SIRI loves to mess with me when I use voice memo.
I couldn’t get these words out of my head. I began to ponder what they meant in relationship to our purpose. So I asked myself, “Is your purpose tied up in self-preservation”? Now I am asking you all the same question. Have you thought about what it looks like to always hold onto those perfect moments you experience in life? Do you think you are missing out on something more?
Here’s an example of what I mean. The days each of my sons were born were life-changing. I could easily freeze that moment in time but at what cost? I would have missed out on being fully present for their growing up years. Their wedding days would look like just another day because my focus was on preserving one moment in time at the cost of all the others.
A recurring message throughout this podcast was for us to give ourselves permission for the seasons to change. When we do this, I believe we allow God to work more fully in us. It gives us a better chance to reach the purpose He planned for us. There is nothing wrong with self-preservation in other contexts such as when facing life or death, or accomplishing a goal like running a marathon. But for the context of this post, we need to hold onto self-preservation loosely so it does not overwhelm the purpose God planned for us.
My life in the last several years looks a little lost on the outside. But if you could peek into my heart, a beautiful work is being done. The season of my life changed when I retired and my purpose looks different. What many might not see is how God takes the time we give Him and uses it for good. This work is all about surrendering and embracing the new life that God promises. Letting go of the idea of “is your purpose tied up in self-preservation” opens the door to the work God plans for you.
God works in and through us no matter what our age. He moves us forward as we surrender pieces of ourselves to Him. In the moment we invite Him to be our Savior, He not only rejoices but provides opportunities for us to honor Him. As much as we love the comfortable and familiar, we need to let go. God’s call is not easy or comfortable. Hanging onto those precious times of life that brought us great joy is trying to freeze frame our future. Purpose occurs when we let go, let God lead and move ever closer to Him.
Chrystal Evans Hurst was the guest on the podcast. Here are some wise words to remind you that who you are is worth everything to God. He loved writing your story and enjoys seeing you fulfill your beautiful purpose.
If you are still here, you are supposed to be here.
Grace to yourself and your circumstance to always rescue the girl.
You need to have something to pour out to other people.
Live your life and show up like you are supposed to be there.
Reimagining our purpose is a journey of accepting the new even when the old is our happy place. It looks like surrendering those perfect life moments in order to live more fully in the here and now. Letting go of self-preservation makes room for a life in vibrant color rather than one that is fading or yellowing. Seeking purpose is about letting God lead even when it looks nothing like we imagined.
Don’t set people up as experts over your life, letting them tell you what to do. Save that authority for God; let him tell you what to do. No one else should carry the title of ‘Father’; you have only one Father, and he’s in heaven. And don’t let people maneuver you into taking charge of them. There is only one Life-Leader for you and them—Christ. Matthew 23:8-10 MSG
Blessings on your week!
To catch up on the whole Reimagining our Purpose series, click HERE.
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