When You Don’t Know Your Purpose (and the Future Seems a Scary Thing)

During our teenage years, several big questions loom on the horizon, hovering at the edge of our mind and causing stress and worry and fear when we least expect it:

What are we going to do with the rest of our lives?

Who will we become as adults?

What will our future look like?

What is our purpose on this earth?

We’ve already talked about how how stressful the teen years can be and how to live each day one step at a time. But even if you have your daily life under control, these big questions remain. And they can inspire more terror than any test, project, jam-packed day, or sleepless night we will ever experience.

There’s something we have to remember, when we face these questions and the doubt and fear that rise up within us at the thought of the future.

We already know our main purpose in this life. 

You don’t have to think about it at all. You don’t have to worry, plan, or spend hours trying to “find yourself”. As a Christian, your purpose is clear as day.

It is to know God and to make Him known. 

This will take many forms, look a little bit different for everyone. But ultimately, the goal of every Christian life is the same. It doesn’t matter how you go about it; the goal is God’s glory.

One of your purposes in the world is to know God, to seek a relationship with him above everything else.

To spend time with Him, to learn His Word and the power of prayer.

To seek Him in your daily tasks and duties and do everything for His glory.

To experience His life-changing love and mercy and grace, to accept the death Christ died for you and let that love overflow in your heart and overtake every sin and shame that hides there.

Your other purpose is to make God known, to proclaim Him to the world.

To spread the love of God to all the people you interact with, to devote time to those around you.

To share the gospel with the unbelievers you come across, to support the spreading of the gospel around the world.

To live in such a way that no one can see you and not believe that God is real, to live with a heart overflowing with love and gratitude and praise that makes everyone want to believe.

These are your callings, both now and in the future. They will not change when you graduate, when you get a job, when you get married. The college and major and job you choose are nowhere near as important as the way you use those things to God’s glory; no matter where you end up in life, you can fulfill these two purposes.

You don’t have to find your own identity and meaning in life. They have been given to you. Trust in that.

love, grace

Remember…Take It One Step at a Time

one step at a time.edited.jpg

Last week I reminded myself and all of you that we can’t do everything. Today, I have one more thing to share with you that I hope will help you manage your stress and enjoy life.

Because the truth is, even if you are only doing essential things and not trying to do everything, life as a teenager can be very stressful, confusing, and somewhat scary. Once you hit high school, you have a million things flying at you and you’re suddenly expected to make a bunch of decisions that will impact the rest of your life (or at least some of it).

School, church, extracurriculars, college prep, home life, friendships…it can get overwhelming. But the Bible has something to say about that.

I want to bring the encouragement of Matthew 6 to any of you who are feeling overwhelmed and stressed:

“Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” -Matthew 6:34

This is the answer to the stress of this phase of life and every other phase after: Take it one step at a time. 

Don’t think about the things you have to do in two weeks. Don’t think about how many decisions you have to make in the next year. Just think about this:

What does God want you to spend today doing? 

And then, to narrow it down more, what does He want you to spend the next hour doing?

Just do that thing, with your full attention, to the best of your ability. And then, do the next thing, and the next.

When a big decision comes your way, choose the best path that you can and move forward from that, one step at a time once again, trusting that God is in control and that one decision will not make or break your life.

If you trust God to direct you, all you have to do is keep moving forward, using your time wisely to complete the work that He places in front of you.

Let Him take care of the rest.

Let’s seek peace together this school year by placing it all in God’s hands and simply moving forward each day, one step at a time.

love, grace