I think a lot of us have heard to “Follow your passion” and “What’s
your purpose in life” at some point or another. For a long time, I had those
two things personally mixed up. In this post, I wanted to just chat a little about
my personal view of my life’s passion/purpose relationship.
Now, I hope this doesn’t come off like with a “motivational
speaker” feel. While I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that, I don’t
think it’s my cup of tea. Mostly, I like to view my blog as just my views and
opinions on life. They fit the way I live. I don’t think everything is
universal or believe in specific buzzwords or “7 Steps” for improving someone’s
quality of life. Each person is on their own individual journey and God wired
each of us uniquely. Just because something that works for me might not be the
best for you and vice versa. :)
Ok, back to the topic at hand. I personality have a crap ton
of passions and am interested in probably far too many things than I have time
for. I guess I figured those are all of the little things that made up what the
world knows as “Seth”. I would go through various phases of each of these
interests. After a few months of pressing into a specific thing, I would see
others extremely more gifted and passionate about it, get discouraged, and move
onto something else. For so long, I was so desperate to find out that one thing
I could do or something I
truly enjoyed more so much that would help me discover my purpose
. And it never came. One of the reasons, I think it bothered
me so much is that I’m a BIG PICTURE kind of person. I felt like I wanted to
find that BIG passion about that will spring me into my BIG purpose. I loved being
a husband and a dad, entertaining friends, creating things, doing things for
other people, playing piano, making people laugh, etc. There were so so so many
things I loved doing, but not one specific area pointed me in a direction of my
God given purpose or one that that completed captivated my interest. I think it
caused me go get a little depressed for a few years. I was living a fantastic life, I loved Jesus,
my family was amazing, but there was just something I knew I was meant
to be doing!
Fast forward a few years. Now it’s just me and the kids. I’m
doing my single dad thing and still doing all of my hobbies when I had time,
but I still felt this tiny little thing inside me (my purpose) that was dying
to know. I knew it was more than being a good dad, working hard at my job,
being there for friends, etc. I think I drew closer to God a lot over those
past few years, but still never really figured it out. However as more and more
time went by, finding my purpose
kind of got put on hold. I quit focusing on finding it, so that desire just
kind of went into hibernation.
Well, of course God revealed all of this to me in the most
unique and simple way. I’ll try to explain it the best I can. Hahahaha.
Sometimes I feel like trying to explain what’s going inside my brain is like
trying to dump out a can of Alphabet soup and trying to alphabetize each letter
in order. :D I know everything I have is right there in front of me, but organizing
it all can be tough.
Anyways, I was just doing my morning routine. I dropped all
of my kids off at their schools and was headed to work. Normally, I don’t make
stops on the way to work. I prefer to maximize my time at work to get the most
done. However, this morning I was in the car just listening to some worship
music and driving some backroad route to avoid school buses and get me to work
faster. So I was just driving and just kind of hanging out with God, when I
noticed this patch of sunflowers. They were all lined up just facing the sun
and just soaking up the rays. I actually pulled my car over on the side of the
road and got out to look at them because it was just so mesmerizingly beautiful.
Suddenly, the subject of my purpose
back up to my brain. I was just standing there on the side of the road talking
to God about these little flowers getting life from the sun. I again started to
ponder how I could be affect people and fulfill that desire & life that
everyone needs that way the sun did for these flowers. I was so tired of being
this generic human and Christian. I know he made each of us so unique; I wanted
to fulfill His vision for my life.
I just stood there for a few minutes staring off into space.
I’m sure people driving were so confused by this guy in a shirt and tie just
standing in the ditch on the side of the road. My car was still running and I
wasn’t flagging anyone for help, so people probably thought I was just waiting
until no traffic was coming so I could take an emergency ditch poop. Hahah! Come on now, who hasn’t take a ditch poop? ;)
After a few minutes of just standing there and wondering for
time what I was put on this earth to do, like that sun
was feeding those flowers, I felt God speak to me The sun shining on these
little flowers represented my passions
but nourishing those little flowers was definitely not the sole purpose
of the sun. The sun brings light
and life on a grand scale; those flowers are just attracted to it because it’s doing
what it’s supposed to be doing. For so long, I was trying to find that one
thing that would give me my purpose, but I was going about it completely
backwards. God told me to quit worrying about focusing on finding those one or
two things I was completely passionate about. I was focusing way too narrow. My passions start and flow from my purpose.
For so long, I was trying to work up. I realized my purpose is first, that
would lead down and overflow into all of the things I was interested in. It was definitely an eye opening, life
changing event (in a ditch, hahahah). I didn’t
get a revelation that morning about what my purpose was, but I felt like I knew
how to find it.
So I started to pray and focus on my big picture, instead of
individually focusing on all of the little. It was so similar to the last time
I was looking for my purpose, except for this time I started to find it. I didn’t
hear it immediately or over a couple of days, rather I would just start to
encounter people or little situations that I felt drawn to. Sometimes I would
find myself telling encouraging or funny stories or doing something small to
help someone; however this time around I could feel something growing in me. For the first time, I felt like
I was becoming the real “Seth” that I had been looking for this entire time. As I started really putting myself out there,
I found I was so drawn to two specific things. So I focused on those two things
and I felt my life just kind of click. “Encouragement
That’s my purpose. :) Those two simple concepts are what I was
designed to do. It’s so funny to me, how I struggled for years with all of
these intricate plans and methods trying to come up with this master plan, and
I finally realize it’s all about those two simple words.
I love that God showed me those two simple little things for
First, there’s no specific target audience. I don’t care
where I am, there’s always someone that needs what I am put here to do. I do
think that my purpose in life is pretty simple and I’m sure other people have
way more complex purposes; however, I
don’t believe that anyone’s reason for being is important than anyone else’s.
We were all created one of a kind and I feel that no one is more important to
God than anyone else. But it’s nice being able to do what I feel I was meant to
do wherever I am.
Second, I feel like my passions FINALLY make sense to me. I
promise my entire life, I’ve always been so frustrated because I wanted to be
extremely good or talented at something. I would see my friends who are
incredibly athletic, intelligent, musically included, make you cry hilarious, had
hobbies they absolutely loved to do, etc. I just never felt like I was super awesome
or ultra-interested at one thing. Instead, I was semi-good and semi-interested
in odd variety of things. I absolutely love the way God wired me know that I
know my mission and purpose. Although, I might not be the best or even close to
it at anyone specific thing, I believe God wired me to be able to relate with a
broad audience of people because of my natural gifting of “being kinda good and
moderately interested in at a lot of stuff”. Hahaha. If someone needs something
or I can do something to encourage them, chances are I have enough random
talents to make it work for just about anyone. I love knowing how God designed
me to encourage and help by giving me these random passions and interests. If
someone needs help with a birthday party, I can make balloon animals or design
the invitation. If someone is sad, I can make them a little craft or piece of
jewelry to brighten their day. Or if someone needs a laugh, I can sit down to make
up a silly song or tell them a funny story about me accidentally taking a sip of
pee in a Mountain Dew can one time.
So now after all of
this time, I don’t feel inferior for not having a specialty. Rather, I feel
special not having just one. :) God uses my averageness to encourage and help.
That makes me happy.
Be Blessed and Be a Blessing,