The picture that goes along with this post is of me as a three year old dressed up as a nurse. That happened to be an outfit that was on a stuffed teddy bear but I had taken it off and dressed myself in the medical hat and vest. My parents had snapped the photo only thinking that I sure did look cute.
Around that same time, in another house across town, a different set of parents snapped a picture of their son looking oh so cute in a handmade military outfit. He was four at that time and his name was Phillip.
As a parent, I know the feeling in your heart when you see your child dress up in the vocational clothes of an adult. My children have dressed as teachers, police officers, queens, kings, circus masters, dancers, lumberjacks, doctors, nurses and the list goes on. For me, seeing my children dressed as an adult causes my heart to feel warmth as I look at them with love, but it also causes a little bit of sad-excitement. I’m excited to see who and what they will grow into but it also makes me feel sad inside when I think about time passing by too quickly.
Both my parents and Phillip’s parents may have had the same feelings while they smiled as they took our pictures but they had no idea how prophetic those pictures would become in our lives. I would grow up and become a nurse. Phillip would grow up and join the military.
While my example is not an actual prophecy inspired by God through a prophet, it was in fact inspired by God.
God has a kind way of planting seeds in our hearts and minds that point us in the direction of the person He intends us to be.
Last week I wrote on God’s history with us (The Friend Who Knows All), reminding all of us that at creation, the beginning of time, God knew that we would be a part of history. He knows all of our days before even one of them comes to pass. He knew then the path you would take, the job you would have, the role you would hold within your family, who you would marry, who your children would be, He knew it all and He knows it all.
But God doesn’t keep all of His knowledge of you stored up behind lock and key, leaving you mindlessly wandering, wondering what to do with your life, He kindly gives you clues. He causes intrigue within your heart. He puts people in your path that you can watch and learn from. He causes words to be spoken at just the right moment that pierce your heart and steer you a certain way with your next move. He is always revealing things to us, we just have to have the eyes to see it.
God not only gives you clues along the way to guide you, He also gave us His word and His word gives a pretty clear picture of our purpose. The Bible doesn’t exactly give us guidance on what career to pursue, which college you should attend, which house you should buy, whether or not it is time to retire but it does give us guidance on our calling. It doesn’t give you a play by play map of your life and the decisions you will make, but it does give a glimpse into the end goal.
Our purpose is to bring God glory (1 Corinthians 10:31).
Our calling is to be imitators of Jesus (Ephesians 5:1-2).
Our goal is eternal life spent with Him, praising Him forever (Psalm 145:21).
You see, it doesn’t matter so much as to what job you have, what hobbies you partake in, which neighborhood you live in, which school you send your kids to – those are all preferences. And goodness, don’t we love to know if we are making the right choice in all of those areas?! But what does matter is that within those things, are you fulfilling your purpose of bringing God glory? Are you looking more and more like Christ daily? Is your mind fixed on eternity with Him?
God has a plan for each of His children and as long as we continue to come into His presence, He’s not going to let us miss it. We may take the hard way, but we will eventually get there and we can trust that God won’t leave us on the way.
Do me a favor, assess your life right now. Are you giving glory to God? Are you being an imitator of Christ? Are you eternally focused? If not, there may need to be a change, but not necessarily within your circumstances. The change needs to be within your heart. Ask God to show you today whether you are living into your purpose, calling and goal of your life. You may be surprised at what He reveals, after all, He is always working on our behalf.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.” Colossians 3:23
God, may we live out our purpose, our calling and goal of our lives for your eternal glory.
I would also love to hear if you followed the career choice that you had as a child! Feel free to write it in the comments or leave a note on Facebook.