So recently I decided to read the Purpose Driven Life because I was considering reading another “self-help” book but felt the spirit saying, “You need to read a Godly perspective on purpose before you read anymore worldly perspectives.” So I did a search, got a nice deal on the book (thanks Amazon!) and set a start date.
Part of my accountability to finish the book is to blog about my experience, my reflections and the activities from the book. The other part is to read the book in a group (waves to any group members reading this post).
Chapter 1 is titled “It All Starts with God.” The passage that stuck with me from this chapter is:
The search for the purpose of life has puzzled people for thousands of years. That’s because we typically begin at the wrong starting point — ourselves. We ask self-centered questions like What do I want to be? What should I do with my life” What are my goals, my ambitions, my dreams for my future? But focusing on ourselves will never reveal our life’s purpose. The Bible says, “It is God who directs the lives of his creatures; everyone’s life is in his power.”
The scripture that was shared in this chapter that spoke to me was from Romans 8:6, “For to be carnally minded [is] death, but to be spiritually minded [is] life and peace (NKJV).” Rev. Warren quotes this verse from the Message Bible which reads, “Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life.”
To close, I want to share my reflection on the question to consider, basically its like those questions at the end of a story in a literature book from grade school through college that are supposed to help you better understand the reading and get you to think deeper about the story. Today’s question was: In spite of all the advertising around me, how can I remind myself that life is really about living for God, not myself?
For me, how I can/do remind myself that life is really about living for God and not myself is by staying connected to other Christians and to a local church. Having acquaintances, colleagues and friends who are Christians who are actively working on their faith, the latter part is key, is a great check point and support system. I know that they will “check me” directly or indirectly about whose I am and what life is really about. An extension of that is being connected to a local church who is also working actively on their faith, this latter part is also important. One “revelation” that I have gotten being at my current local church is that church is a verb not a noun. You do not just go to church and sit and get a little mini concert and some nice inspirational words; you are church (a being verb) and you do church (an action verb). This means that “the church” is with me always and when I do go to a gathering of several churches (read people with the church in them) in one building its a participatory thing whether its clapping hands, waving arms, saying a worship or praise phrase or even hugging a neighbor…actions! Sure there are other things that people can do and that I do like reading The Word (which I think is SUPER important) but for me its the connections with like minded people and people ahead of me in “the game”/the Christian journey that remind me that its about Him not me.
Have you read this book? What did you think of it? What did you learn? How would you answer today’s question to consider?