A walk along a path bordering a lake granted glimpses of sunshine and new life. Robins flitted among the tree branches. Blue jays wrestled playfully in the grass. Green buds began their unfurling toward Spring. Each creature, bloom and blade of grass reached skyward in an act of worship. All knew the grand plan as their purpose unfolded. Rediscovering life’s purpose is not always as simple as a walk around a lake. But this day new life trumped uncertainty.
The dance of new life displayed simplicity and certainty. The rhythm matched the gentle breezes blowing as I captured each piece of beauty and stored it in my memory. I struggled with the ease of the springtime dance wondering if reaching my purpose would ever flow as smoothly.
With a hitch in my step, I slowed down. I let my footsteps and breathing begin the descent into a place where I could listen and be still. Time slowed down on the path by the lake as God pulled me away from my doubts. The worship music piping through my ear buds became distant and the truth of God grew louder.
Many times we feel we don’t hear from God because of distraction. Rediscovering life’s purpose is a goal that seems impossible to reach. But when we least expect it God answers our prayers pieces of the puzzle start fitting together. The walk around the lake was just a bonus.
[Tweet “Our purpose is refined and reframed as our story unfolds in God’s perfect timing.”]
My story continues to unfold and as I seek my purpose again, I find that it never goes away but is refined and reframed. God wrote my beautiful story and each chapter evolves in His perfect timing. I look ahead and desire to know every detail–what’s going to happen and when it’s going to happen. Purpose appears to get lost in my desire to get to the future faster than God’s timing. The striving caused me to lose focus and believe I couldn’t see my purpose.
What I know about God continues to amaze me. He clearly defined my purpose when He wrote out the story of my life. It remains part of who I am even in the times I lose sight of where I am going. Major life shifts such as retirement do not result in lost purpose but instead, God grants a time of refinement and clarification as we move forward again. For almost two years, I felt like I was holding on tightly to rediscovering my purpose. I looked for something brand new rather than using the gifts that God wrote into my story. As I walked around the lake last week, I heard God say “I’m listening.”
God took the pieces of my purpose and put them back together again. The prayers that whisper through my lips have not been in vain. God takes our dreams and molds them into our purpose. The catch is that we need to patiently wait for His timing to walk in sync with our dreams. All it took was a walk around a lake to provide a clear perspective and affirmation from those around me to point me in the direction towards my purpose.
God’s words from Ephesians share the truth of how He has always had designs on us for glorious living. I’m letting these words soak in this week. What truth of God speaks to you as you seek to know Him better?
It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone. Ephesians 1:11-12 MSG
Walking in purpose with God!
You may find me hanging out at these lovely places today.
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Being quiet and just listening for His still small voice is truly a joy. Glad your walk was so blessed!
Thank you! I love when you stop by and share some encouragement!
Loved this post, Mary!! My word for 2017 is actually “PURPOSE” and I’ve been reading up on and writing about what our (and my own) purpose as believers is in my blog. I love the verse you shared in the MSG version of Ephesians 1:11. The wording makes it more relatable to knowing God’s plan and purpose for our lives. Waiting is always the hardest part for me, too, especially when we see a vision and have such a great desire for something to happen!
My word is purpose too so I was excited to see that you are seeking purpose in 2017 too. The Message version does have a way of providing a different perspective as we see to know God more fully. Praying we seek patience in the waiting knowing that God’s purpose is always there as He is working in and through us to lead us closer to it. Blessed that you joined me here today Ann.
“God takes our dreams and molds them into our purpose” love this, Mary. And I’m so thankful for your walk around the lake, that God is speaking to you in this way, affirming His love and care for you. Many blessngs, friend.
It would be even better if we were walking around the lake together. God speaks most clearly to me when I am outside with Him. It’s always been that way. I think it is the change of scenery and chance to distance myself for a small bit of time from everyday life. Thank you for encouraging me sweet friend!
Its so hard to wait on His timing. Thanks for the reminder!
It is so hard to wait for God’s timing. I will be praying for you as you remain patient in the waiting. Thanks for being here!
Such a beautifully, timely post Mary. I know my purpose is being redefined and I just need to be patient and allow God to unfold it one piece at a time. Blessings!
I see God working in you from afar. I know you struggle with all you have gone through the last few years but God is working behind the scenes. I am praying for you as you wait patiently and let God do what He does best. Blessings!
I so love this and timely…as I am in somewhat of a new season…Our purpose is refined and reframed as our story unfolds in God’s perfect timing.
I love hearing that God is taking you into a new season but that He is also leading you to purpose in His own way. I’m glad that sometimes God speaks to us through others. Love having you here. Blessings on your week!
Amen to this!
Grateful to God’s purpose in my life.
Thank you Lux! May we hold onto the truth that God will continue to lead us forward in His beautiful timing.
I’m so glad you can see spring unfurling, Mary. I’m longing for that day here. I love your thoughts about how we never lose our purpose when our circumstances change. They just get refined and reframed. And how true it is that we lose sight of it when we try to get to the future faster than God’s timing. Your insight and your photos are so encouraging. Thank you! Love and hugs to you!
Little by little boring is trying to appear. This week has been very cold even though spring starts next week. God is teaching me about purpose this year and I am embracing the process since it is my one word for the year. I appreciate you affirming these words and I pray that God continues to lead you in His beautiful timing. Love and hugs friend!
“Purpose appears to get lost in my desire to get to the future faster than God’s timing.” I love this line Mary as I know I can push in and lead myself, instead of walking slower and letting God take the lead. When walking slower too, like you on your nature walk, we see so much more unfolding. We see the details and His perfect creation. Thanks for this reminder today. We still have snow on the ground, but I know His creations are still living, breathing, and waiting and will be ready to unfold when the season changes.
It is the coldest it’s been all winter this past week so bringing in a little springtime helps me too. I have always been one who thinks I know best. I try to fix things and take care of things on my own instead of giving it to God. He has the perfect plan and perfect timing. May we hold onto that truth today.
Mary, I enjoyed your post and can so easily relate. Was just thinking this morning how much He has pulled together, but at the time I couldn’t see it. He continues to work on us and get us ready for the next step.
God loves revealing pieces of our journey in His timing. He also loves to work when we think nothing is happening at all. God is always working and His plan is always the best. Thank you for being here.
I’m so glad that you have been stilling your steps to listen and soak in all that God wants you to hear and do, Mary. I will pray that your path in this second chapter of your life brings great joy to you as well as to others, my friend!
I have moments that I am slowing down but more often than not God is working to catch up with me. I need to be more intentional about slowing down. God has great things in store for me. I need to allow His perfect timing to unfold. Blessings!
you’ve awakened my senses to the distinct possibility that spring just might be around the corner. you’ve encouraged my spirit this morning, Mary …
and what else is new!
so very good to visit with you once again …
Oh how I’ve missed you Linda! So good to see you here today. I’m glad you caught a little springtime in this post. It’s trying to show up around here even though it has been very cold. I hope all is well with you.
I Love This: He clearly defined my purpose when He wrote out the story of my life. It remains part of who I am even in the times I lose sight of where I am going.
We can rest in the truth of this statement. We don’t need to find our purpose, God has already inscribed it on our hearts!
Thank you for being here Sarah! May we all hold onto the truth that God has inscribed our purpose on our hearts and may we be patient with the unfolding of His beautiful story for us. Blessings!
Mary, I am curious. Is your purpose right now “doing the next thing, or has the Lord given you something tangible?” If none of my “beeswax” just tell me!!! LOL.
I love how you want to go deeper friend. The Lord is revealing the tangible but it is a process and His timing is still coming to fruition. Thank you for being here.
So much wisdom here, Mary! I definitely relate to trying to rush ahead of God’s timing to see the next chapter instead of just looking for the purpose he has for me now. I love the photos too- out walking in beautiful places like that is where I often find it easiest to connect with God.
I know I grow impatient and try to rush ahead because I think I know best. But God has already laid out our beautiful stories and it is important to trust Him in the unfolding of each chapter. We have walking outside in common. God loves to meet me on the path in the park. It is always so beautiful. Thank you for being here Lesley.
Mary, beautiful post. Your quiet wisdom is profound. I’ve fallen prey to the distractions in life. Then, when I don’t think I’m hearing from God, I become discouraged. When, really, all that is needed is some quiet time with Him. Time to still my crazy thoughts, and silence my to-do list so I can just listen.
One truth of God’s that is speaking to me now is the importance of being intentional in prayer…for my family, immediate and extended, and for others. As I draw closer to Him in prayer, my ears are opened to hear how to pray.
If I share wisdom it is all from God. He is so good to teach me lessons through my writing. I desperately need quiet time and am good at it some days and other days not so much. Taking a walk seems to be one of the best ways for me to find that time.
I appreciate you sharing how God is calling you to spend time with Him in prayer. I love how He gets our attention and in the process it deepens our relationship with Him. I will pray for you as you listen and hear from God.
Mary, This was such a beautiful conveyance of your journey with the Lord and His purpose for you.
I always marvel in the springtime when the temperatures are still consistently cold, yet the flowers still come up and the buds still appear, moving forward despite it all, without any coaxing from the weather.
The Lord will do the same thing in us I believe. He orders our steps and planned the works we would do before the worlds began. It is up to us to wait for His perfect timing.
Thanks for this very edifying post!
Thank you for the image of buds appearing and moving forward despite it all. That is exactly what we need to do in the waiting. Persevere and trust that God’s timing is perfect. It is so good to see you here Karen. I’m blessed that these words were ones that spoke to you.
Like Andrew, my attention was captured by those two words: “refined and reframed.” And that reframing bit comes hard sometimes because we have our boundaries set in cement. It’s so loving of God to put us through the process of re-thinking our plans — and to listen to our groaning as we adjust!
Those are two powerful words aren’t they? I know that being in charge of myself and thinking I can figure it all out shows I’m not very good at allowing refinement. God is a patient teacher and allows time for us to rejoin Him in the journey. I’m so thankful that He is listening to my groanings especially in the last few years.
“…it never goes away but is refined and reframed.” That is so right, so perfect…and sometimes so very hard to explain to others!
There are times when I think some well-meaning folks WANT me to see a destruction of my purpose in illness, and not a new definition. Frustrating!
I imagine that your purpose has gone through multiple refinements in the last few years. It sounds very frustrating that well-meaning people in your life see your purposely differently than you do. Praying for you as continue to be refined and reframed by the one who does it best.