What Difference Does It Make?
Fourth in a 4-part series about finding and living out your life’s purpose
The search for a meaningful life leads God’s people on a journey. We want to know where we fit in God’s story … or if we even fit at all.
That’s why Christians wrestle with their purpose by asking important questions:
- “Why am I here?” helps us understand our identity as a masterpiece of God
- “What should I do?” helps us identify our call to our personal, God-created task
Those two questions naturally beg a third: “What difference will it make?”
People hunger to have a purposeful impact. The drive to “make a difference” powers the need to understand our individual uniqueness and calling.
Your Role in God’s Story
God understands that need. In 1 Peter 4:10, He casts a powerful vision of what life can be like when we understand our amazing, individually-tailor-made role in His story: “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms” (NIV).
It’s a compelling picture of what life looks like when you step into your part of God’s story.
- You fill a one-of-a-kind role. God calls you to use your gift. A call from God is an appointment from Him, making you the steward of the work He has entrusted to you. As such, the movement of God is not relegated to institutions only, but to individuals like you. When just one believer hears God’s call and responds, he demonstrates how God works through His people – the Church – to bring about change. Those who shirk an assignment from God allow the world to change the Church instead.
- You change one corner of the world.The movement of God is not confined to a single activity or place. He uses all kinds of people in all kinds of places as instruments of His grace: a compassionate adult who showers love on lonely, isolated children or single parents … a supportive colleague in a cutthroat corporate environment … a skilled professional who sees a need and uses his skills to meet it. “I can’t do everything,” said American author and clergyman Everett Hale (1822-1909), chaplain of the U.S. Senate. “But that won’t stop me from doing the little I can do.” By answering God’s call, you can redeem the empty places in your city, state, country, and world.
- You reflect a component of God’s grace. 1 Peter 4:10 reminds us thatGod’s grace takes “various forms.” It comes in all shapes and sizes. Your gift, skill, or ability is a reflection of God’s mercy. As such it is unique, representing one more facet of God’s unmerited favor that can touch an unsuspecting person in a way he’d never dream.
What Difference Does It Make?
So when it comes to taking on your role in God’s story – finding and fulfilling your purpose – what difference will it make?
You can’t make any difference at all if you do nothing.
But when you wrestle with your purpose … discover your strengths … embrace your passion … identify a task … start living it out … you don’t merely step into a role in God’s story.
You become part of writing the story. And a captive world sees God’s love in action.
Your Place in God’s Story: read the rest of the series
Your Place in God’s Story, Part 1: Is this as good as it gets?
Your Place in God’s Story, Part 2: Why am I here?