Once again I am inspired by my friend Dr. John Stanko and his thoughts on the subject of finding one’s purpose in life. My life was changed when I sat in one of John’s “purpose” seminars nearly twenty years ago. I was leading my own classes on worship at the same seminar, but when I had a break in the conference schedule, I was a student in his class. I am still a student as I receive his weekly “Monday Memo,” where he continues to ruminate on the pursuit of purpose.
In this week’s “Monday Memo,” John continues with the third installment in a trio of related articles–the first being “Purpose Prayer,” the second, “Purpose Food,” and this final installment in the series, “Purpose Thoughts.”
I was particularly intrigued by thought #3, as it relates to pursuing one’s purpose as a profession. Which points speak to you?
- Purpose is more relevant than when I began teaching it 20 years ago.
Why? Because there are more opportunities available today than back
then. When there are so many things you can do, you must ask the question what it is that you should do more than ever.
- The number one reason why more people don’t know their purpose is
because they don’t ask and keep on asking until they get an answer.
- The number two reason why more people don’t know their purpose is
because they try to figure out too quickly how they can make money from it. Thoughts about career, salary and benefits hinder or destroy
emerging purpose thoughts.
- The number three reason why more people don’t know their purpose is
because they are afraid, not of failure, but of success! Meditate on
that for a moment.
- The younger generation is not as interested in purpose as I would
have thought. They are interested in service and meaning, which emanate from purpose. But because they have seen purpose kidnapped by salaryand career interests, they react to the concept of purpose for the wrong reasons.
- Women continue to be the main consumers of my purpose message, probably because purpose was denied them for so long.
- I still maintain that motherhood is a role and not a purpose – seldom is anyone’s purpose defined in terms of serving or helping
another person exclusively, unless that person has special needs due to a physical or mental challenge.
- It is never too early or too late in life to pursue purpose.
- When I reached my 50s, I thought my development was pretty much
over, that I would do what I had been doing, hopefully a little better
or for more money. To my surprise, my 50s were my greatest growth
- I get more questions and sometimes opposition when I teach about
doing what you love and what gives you joy than anything else I teach.
That always surprises me.
- When I started teaching purpose, I thought every church in the world (well, at least in the U.S.) would want their people to hear that message. They have not and pastors continue to misunderstand and even oppose the purpose message.
- If I could help churches get more volunteers to usher, work in the nursery or sing in the choir, I would be a busy and probably wealthy man.