I’m not sure we get it. Life is incredibly short in the grand scheme of things, yet we live each day as if we have an endless supply. Aligning our priorities, getting our finances in order and doing something about the “Jesus thing” always seem to be something we’ll work on tomorrow.
The fact of the matter is that if Jesus is truly Lord of your life, if you have surrendered your life to Him, then His mission for your life must be the all consuming endeavor of your days.
Intellectually we all know that we have no guarantee of one more breath. Recently a member of my family suffered a stroke followed by a massive heart attack. One minute he’s leading a normal life, going about his daily routine. The next moment his life is gone. There were no warning signs, no time to “make things right”, no time to prepare. The same fate could face any of us. Yet despite knowing this, we continue to live as if we have all the time in the world.
When you study the life of Jesus, you see that all of His steps were purposeful. He understood the finiteness of human existence. He didn’t have time to pursue the pleasures of this world. He had a mission and He lived every day in ways that led to its fulfillment. Before He died, He declared, “It is finished”. He had completed the work He had been sent to do. Will we be able to say the same?
There is a desperate need for a sense of urgency in our lives. If we are not spending our time engaged in the mission of Christ, then what is it we are pursuing? Will it matter when all is said and done? How will we account for our activities when we face God? The answers to the preceding questions are obvious, but still it seems we have not internalized the consequences and made the appropriate changes in our lives. We pursue the pleasures and possessions of our fallen world instead of the purity and peace of the Kingdom.
One of the keys to living with urgency is articulating our chief purpose. The overarching aim of the life of every follower of Jesus must be to further His mission on earth. What that looks like specifically in your life is determined by your own unique combination of gifts, talents and skills. My personal mission statement is “My purpose is to serve others while encouraging them to live lives of total commitment to Christ”. The casual paraphrase of this is “I want to shake the world with the love of Jesus”. Once determined and written down, you can refer to your purpose statement to help drive every decision. Simply ask the question, “Does the activity in which I am engaging further my purpose?” or “Is the thing I’m pursuing consistent with my purpose?”
Until we understand our purpose it will be very difficult to follow Jesus in every area of our life. Our purpose is the way we intend to work out His mission in our life. Following Jesus is a lifetime commitment, regardless of how long or short our life may be. Commitment is not a word that should be taken lightly. Being committed to something means you throw yourself into it regardless of the cost; it means you do everything possible to achieve the goal. A follower of Jesus is committed by definition; one cannot follow Jesus casually.
If we would follow Him, we must do it with every ounce of our being, and do so with great urgency. Our time is short and the days are growing darker (Ephesians 5:15-16). Are you living a life devoted to His mission? Do you understand your purpose in life? Don’t wait to prayerfully discover and define your part in the mission. Time is fleeting and we must begin to live with a sense of urgency in bringing His love to the peoples of our planet. Understand your purpose and dive into your role as an ambassador of the King.
Question: What is the purpose statement for your life?