What Are You Searching For?
Recently, on a Sunday morning, I shared this quote from Dr. Joseph Stowell, a former president of Moody Bible Institute.
“The Westminster Shorter Catechism is correct when it concludes that ‘man’s chief end’ is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” Why, then, are we so consumed with glorifying ourselves and seeking enjoyment in and for ourselves apart from Him? Perhaps this is the reason we often find life so disappointing, disruptive and ultimately, full of regret.”
I don’t think it is wrong to want to be accepted and appreciated. I believe God created us with a desire for significance. We want to be important to ourselves and others. The great concern I have for myself and others is that we go about it in the wrong ways and wrong places. I think that sometimes we seek attention and equate it to acceptance and appreciation. They are not the same and we can discover too late that settling for attention can result in major disappointment. An expensive wedding, a bigger home, a classy car — these are no guarantee of genuine happiness.
We will never find the fulfillment, acceptance and significance we long for apart from a personal faith relationship with our Creator God.
In Genesis 1:27, we read “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him, male and female He created them.”
Folks, when we accept the fact that the true value and worth of our lives is because we were designed, by God, for intimacy with Him through Jesus Christ, our Redeemer, Savior and Lord. That is the way we will experience real significance.
Listen to what the apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your body.”
In 1 Corinthians 10:31, the Apostle wrote, “So, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
Question — as a Christ follower is it your stated purpose to:
(1) Honor God?
(2) Glorify God?
I love the challenge given to us by Peter. We remember that he, several times, fell on his face but in time he really got his focus correct and became a great voice for the LORD. In 1 Peter 2:9-10 he wrote:
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare praises to Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
As Christians, we are people who have received mercy. We belong to God. As such, we are to declare His praises to a watching world. Talk about significance!
As I was going through high school, I had a deep desire to become a lawyer. In truth, I saw myself replacing or succeeding Perry Mason or Matlock. All the while the Holy Spirit was reminding me that I had given my heart and life to Christ and that He had a different future for me — a future in the ministry as an “ambassador for Jesus Christ.” (2 Corinthians 5:20)
Listen to what Paul declared in that passage:
“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf; be reconciled to God.’
Talk about a life of significance! For fifty-nine years it has been my privilege to serve the LORD as one of his ambassadors, representing Him all over the world. And, here I am in my later years still declaring His praises to an incredible church family, plus supporting missionaries, parachurch ministries, getting the word out over YouTube and other venues.
The real value, the real worth, the real significance of my life has come through a personal faith relationship with Jesus Christ.
A life verse that the Holy Spirit gave to me when I first began my ministry is John 15:16, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, to go and bear fruit — fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in My name.”
Think of it — He chose me! He appointed me! Friends — He chose you, as well. Are you honoring His redemptive claim on your life? If you want a life of purpose and significance, recognize Christ has redeemed you and your life. You belong to Him. He purchased you for Himself.
Make it your life purpose that in every facet of your life, you will live —
1. To please Him;
2. To honor Him;
3. To glorify Him;
4. To serve Him.
5. To make Him known to others.
In Mark 10, we read about James and John seeking seats of honor with Christ when He comes into His glory. Listen to their request in verse 37, “Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in Your glory.”
When the other disciples heard about their self-seeking, they were incensed. Listen to our LORD’s response to them and us — “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”
Will each of us do as the Scriptures declare — “Let this same mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus …” If we do, our lives will really be significant and count for God’s glory and the good of others.