Clarity of Purpose

Happy New Year!

Do you have a New Year’s ritual of some kind?  Beyond the celebrating, beyond New Year’s Eve, is there something you’re intentional about to mark the New Year?

New Year’s is a time when we can take a look back at what was, and look forward into what could be.  More than simple New Year’s resolutions this is a time to be intentional about the coming year.

I have a bit of a ritual of sorts I implement on New Year ’s Day.  I head out on a prayer hike with the Lord.  We talk about the previous year – mostly me expressing gratitude for the Lord’s great goodness and His good greatness.

We also talk about the coming year: my hopes, my desires, my reservations, my fears.  I then ask the Lord what the theme for the coming year is: what He wants me to focus on for the coming year.

When I get home I pull out my journal and my planner from the previous year.  I review what happened in the year.  I write in my journal a summary of the year in numerous categories, and compare this year to last year.  I then write about what I believe the Lord is saying to me about the coming year.

Lastly, Anne and I spend some time praying together for the coming year and for each other.

Prior to heading out on my hike Anne and I talk about what we would like to receive from the Lord in the coming year.  Basically that which has been stirring in our hearts.  It’s usually what the Lord has been speaking to us about already.

This year we both had a similar stirring.  We’re asking the Lord for Clarity of Purpose.  We want to have great clarity in regard to why we’re doing what we’re doing.

We’re confident we’re serving the Lord in the work to which He has called us.  However, in the midst of the battles of life it’s easy to lose sight of why we’re doing what we’re doing.  We can simply begin to go through the motions and lose the purpose behind the work.  When we lose sight of the purpose for which we toil, we can soon lose heart, and stop doing that which God has called us to do.

Clarity of purpose helps us stay engaged and alive amidst the struggles of life.

Why do we do what we do?  Why bother?  Why continue?  Why keep paying the price to stay engaged and work hard at what God has put in our hands?

I must say, a key motivator for me is wanting to be able to stand before my heavenly Father and hear Him say, “Well done!  You’ve been faithful with what I entrusted to you – enter into my joy!”  (Matthew 25:21)  I want to produce much good fruit.

So what keeps me engaged is love for God.  And He challenged me on that this year.  When I asked Him about my Clarity of Purpose He simply said, “Love”.  I’m not that good on an aspect of that equation though.  We’re called to love God and love people.  My Clarity of Purpose involves loving people better, because I’m weak at that.

Three words define my “why” for my work:  Love. Lead. Live.

Why do I do what I do?  Ultimately to love God and love people.  However, I’m to love people so I can lead them into life.  Love.  Lead.  Live.  When I do that, I’m loving God as well.

At the end of the day, our “fruit” is measured in the lives of people.  Your purpose and my purpose involves loving people.  It’s not about bank accounts, boats, houses, cars, and worldly possessions.  It’s not about titles, status, popularity and power.  It’s about loving people with God’s love.

So how about you?  What Clarity of Purpose do you have?  He has great purpose for you.  When you have Clarity of Purpose your motivation and engagement is greatly increased, your impact is multiplied, and you can better persevere when things get tough.

I would encourage you to seek God for your Clarity of Purpose – it’s definitely worth your effort.

Matthew 22:37-39

Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

John 15:8

“This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

Comments are closed.