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The series 'Gaining Perspective on God’s Purpose for Your Life' starts with an exploration on how God uses the lives of special characters like Joseph in Genesis 37-50 to speed us up on our spiritual growth. An advanced discipleship guide.
One of our problems in the modern or postmodern world is the tendency to view and live as if God was not there. People have not completely forgotten God. God for most people, however, has been compartmentalized to a small section of their lives, namely Sunday morning. That is it.
With the pressure of the secular world crowding in, even the Sunday worship time is no longer sacred with shops, sports and other programs catching people’s attention. When God is not our focus in life, He becomes only part of our lives. It is this portion that decreases with competing interests. Devotion is no longer devotion.
Though people call themselves Christians, they somehow are not able to look at their lives from God’s perspective. The Book of Ecclesiastes warns us of the influence of an earthly perspective. Many believers are so focused on their earthly lives that they believe God saved them just to have better lives. God wants to accomplish deeper works through their lives than this.
Part of the problem comes from a shallow understanding of salvation. The typical evangelical has been persuaded that they are saved to go to heaven. For them, this summarizes ‘why’ God saved them. Unfortunately, this gospel presentation depreciates God’s purpose for our lives here on earth. It becomes insignificant and unimportant. We figure we are doing well when we just live out our lives as others.
Conclusion: Many believe heaven is a way our rather than a way in! Life on earth is largely an interim period like waiting at the airport. Nothing important happens. A person just passes time. The ticket is bought.
Just think, how much time have you really pondered on why you exist or what God wants to do through your life. Many of us just fill up this time with a good and happy life. Believers end up living and dying without seeing God mysteriously and marvelously work in their lives. Without this belief that God is now working in our lives, even dull sport games, taking an extra course, watching a video, playing a computer game seem much more exciting than ‘going to church.’ After all, we are just filling our spare time. No wonder our teens are missing the excitement of living a life filled with Christ.
Through this study of Joseph’s life we hope to awaken our lives to what God wants to do in us now that He has saved us. He has a good plan to accomplish through our lives, one that is filled with awe and wonder. Underlying this study is a strong assumption that God actively works through all His people’s lives just as He did with Joseph and Jesus. Our Father purposes to enrich each of our lives so that we can have an active part in His kingdom plans.
Conclusion: Life on earth is important for it is my first opportunity to learn and see God’s powerful restoring work take place in and through my life!
We want to complete the task God has set before us. Like Paul says, “So that in the day of Christ I may have cause to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain” (Philippians 2:17). It is not the apostle alone that has a purpose for his life which is compared to a race. Each believer must discern the track God sets before him and run hard.
It is time all of God’s children lift up their perspective and allow God to intertwine His heavenly purposes with their earthly lives. Each of us need to seek out what God has designed to do through our lives and to seek His wisdom and grace to carry it out. This study on the life of Joseph provides just what we need catch this greater vision of what God wants to do through our lives.
- Draw the two charts above. Which best describes your understanding of this time on earth?
Write out Philippians 2:17 from another version. Pray that you would treat this life on earth as a race which you work hard at winning.
Make sure you do your assignment. It helps us slow down so that we can purposefully reflect on areas we need to spiritually grow in.
Stay tuned => This series is still being written and posted.