Have you ever stopped to ask yourself “why am I here”? What is my purpose for being created? What am I doing to serve others? Why is it that our enthusiasm at work on day one or when we just received a new promotion is greater than day 1000?
The book “The Seed” is a narrative about a young man and his quest to discover his purpose in life. Jon Gordon used the life story of Josh to educate all of us on how to find and live our purpose on earth. Josh started his career with so much passion and energy, but later lost his enthusiasm on the job. His boss then challenged him to take two weeks off and decide if he really wants to continue to work at the company. Josh took off for the country side, where he met a wise farmer who gave him a seed and a promise: find the right place to plant the seed, and your purpose will be revealed.
In order to find your purpose, you have to look inward and start from right where you are, taking one step at a time and aiming for incremental progress as you discover and run with your dreams. Our society is driven by a flawed perception that in order to live a life of purpose we have to leave our jobs and go solve world hunger, feed the homeless, move to Africa or start a charity. While these are all noble causes and many are called to do these things, however for many of us our bigger purpose can be found in the here and now, in the jobs we have, right under our noses. And when we find and live this purpose it will provide the ultimate fuel for a meaningful life. You may not build libraries around the world but you can find the bigger purpose in reading to your children. You may not feed the homeless every day but you can nourish your employees and customers with a smile, kind word and care. And while you may not start your own non-profit organization you can begin a charity initiative at work. After all, “charity” means “love in action.” You can make a difference every day and touch the lives of everyone you meet. I have found that when you decide to serve in small ways you get more opportunities to serve in bigger ways as well.
LESSONS FROM “THE SEED”
- Outward appearance can be deceiving: To everyone else, Josh had a great life. He lives in a great neighborhood; work a high paying job with a well-respected company, and a bright future. Unknown to them all, Josh was fed up with his status in life. He was lost in the game of life. Do not assume that a friend or colleague has everything going perfectly, everyone has a story.
- You can create the life you want: Josh returned to the same job, this time he chose to create the kind of life he wants. He chose to be positive rather than being negative on the job. He chose to appreciate his job rather than seeing all the problems like before. He chose to plant himself where he was and grow rather than being unsettled. He decided to reach out and serve others. Happiness is an inside job. It’s a choice. You can start from where you are today and choose to be happy and create the life you really want.
- Get close to God to see things from a higher perspective: God sees your beginning, middle, and end. You may feel lost, but God knows where you began, where you are now, and where you are supposed to go. The big picture is clearer when you see things from a higher perspective. Always ask for guidance from your creator who can direct you and give you a sense of purpose in life. Many people are running through life without a clue about their purpose. They scurry from one place to another, they live paycheck to paycheck, they engage in daily fight for survival without seeking their purpose from the creator.
- To find your purpose, you need to overcome outside pressure: Too many people don’t pursue their purpose and passion in life because they choose to conform to the pressure and expectations of those around them. They listen to naysayers and impossibility thinkers instead of their own hearts. Following your purpose often require a change in your life, and God will use all sorts of people and situations to bring about this change.
- Life is like music: We are part of one life song. We exist to create the symphony of life. Each one of us has a note to play, and you can’t play anyone else’s note. Your job is to play your note and contribute to the one song. It’s a note you were destined to play from before you were born. And when you discover it and play it with joy to the best of your ability, the creator smiles.
- Develop a life of Service: God wants us to live a life of service to others. We can either waste our life, or spend and invest it. God wants us to invest our life in something that will outlast us. The worst thing anyone can do with their life is simply to live for today and for his or herself only. God did not put us on earth to live for just ourselves. He created us to be like Christ. We know that Christ came to earth to do two things according to Mark 10:45: “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45 NIV). Find a way of serving others and you will find happiness.
- Don’t compare yourself with others: Never, ever compare yourself to others. The greatest enemy of growth is the belief that you don’t matter and that your growth doesn’t matter. Just because someone has achieved more material success and reached a higher status doesn’t mean they are more important than you. Everyone is on their own path. Everyone’s timeline is different. Each person has his or her own purpose and reason for existing. Love and appreciate your life and work on your purpose.
You want to learn more about how to discover your purpose? Check out from the book here