Inspiration

Focus on Your Purpose, Not Your Problem

"If by
continuing to live I can do more worthwhile work, then I am not sure which I
should choose. I am pulled in two directions. I want very much to leave this
life and be with Christ, which is a far better thing; but for your sake it is
much more important that I remain alive. I am sure of this, and so I know that
I will stay. I will stay on with you all, to add to your progress and your joy
in the faith."
(Philippians 1:22-25
TEV)

When
you stay focused on your purpose, not your problem, you can be happy even when
life seems to be falling apart.

Paul
was an old man when he was in prison in Rome. He was a long way from home. He
was awaiting execution. Everything has been taken from him - his friends, his
freedom, his ministry, even his privacy, with a guard chained to him 24 hours a
day. It wasn't exactly a happy time for Paul.

But
there was one thing they could not take away from Paul: his purpose. Paul made
the choice to stay focused on his purpose, even when he had lost everything
else. What was his purpose? Serving God by serving others.

Paul
says in Philippians 1:22-25, "If by
continuing to live I can do more worthwhile work, then I am not sure which I
should choose. I am pulled in two directions. I want very much to leave this
life and be with Christ, which is a far better thing; but for your sake it is
much more important that I remain alive. I am sure of this, and so I know that
I will stay. I will stay on with you all, to add to your progress and your joy
in the faith"
(TEV).

I'll
never forget reading Viktor Frankl's book "Man's Search for Meaning." Frankl
was a Jewish psychiatrist who was taken to one of the death camps in Nazi
Germany. All of his family and all of his friends were gassed and murdered. He
talks in his book about one day when he stood in front of the Gestapo stark
naked. They'd taken away the prisoners' clothes and even Frankl's wedding ring.
He stood there with nothing at all when he suddenly realized there was one
thing the Nazis could not take away from him: his choice in how he would
respond.

You
cannot control what other people do to you. You cannot control what other
people do around you. But you can control how you respond.

Talk It Over

  • What
    do you believe is your purpose in life?
  • How
    does your response to a difficult situation change when you realize that how
    you respond is your choice?
  • What
    distractions or influences are keeping you focused on your problem and not your
    purpose?
...Read More.
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