I am beginning to believe that we spend half of our life trying to figure out what our purpose in life is and the latter half, trying to figure out if we accomplished it. We all want to believe we were put on this earth for a reason. Some may feel they have discovered it, excelled at it, and left their mark in the world through great works or deeds. Then, there are the rest of us who either never figured it out or just didn’t care to find out what we were destined to do. It leaves me to question a few things, though. Maybe we spend too much time thinking about it and not enough time just living it.
What if your whole purpose was to simply be born? Maybe your mother never thought she’d have a child, prayed diligently, and was given you, fulfilling what she believed to be her purpose. If we knew that, would we then waste the time we’ve been given? Could your purpose possibly be that you are in the right place at the right time to give aid or comfort to someone? To protect a person from harm? To offer much needed advice or guidance? To love someone enough to fulfill their purpose? To forgive someone that did something unforgiveable? Minutes or hours or years of purpose. We may never know and should we ever know?
Purpose can’t be measured in goals and achievements, any more than the value of one’s life can be measured in dollars and cents. We aren’t brought into this world with a tag showing our worth, our value, or our purpose. We will never know our worth to others, unless they tell us. If we are left to ever wonder what our purpose is in life, maybe it’s because we are never meant to actually find out what it is. Knowing it might allow us to feel there is no other reason for our existence. It could make us miss other opportunities. Or cause us to put off what we were intended to do, altogether missing it.
We can’t all be born for greatness in the sense of fame and fortune. Some of us are destined to be great in quieter ways. Think about the givers. Givers of time, energy, talent, and love. We might be the enablers for those who will be great. While we may never see our names or faces up in lights or all over the internet, we might have been the reason those who are there, made it. We could go our entire lives never seeing the effect we’ve had on others, never realizing the role we’ve played. It doesn’t mean it didn’t make a difference.
It is in the simple things we do in life that make the greatest difference. It’s being a teacher, a coach, a mentor, an advocate, a supporter to those who need it. Being a good friend, a devoted spouse, or a loving parent might make the difference to someone in how they live their life. We might be the incentive, the inspiration, or the reason someone else fulfills their purpose.
Regardless, we can live a life with purpose. Doing our best to be the best at whatever role we choose is key. Thinking of others before ourselves, being open to the endless opportunities to help those in need, or the times we are called on to do what appears to be close to the impossible, might be our true purpose. It is possible that no one else could do it. It was for us, alone, to make it happen. Each kindness, loving gesture, or gentle word is living with purpose. The goals we hit, the achievements we make, and the comforts we attain, are just icing on the cake; the rewards for hard work and dedication. So, while we may assign purpose to ourselves, we need to live our lives well. Our struggles, our defeats, and our mistakes will make us miserable without recognizing that it might be required in order to fulfill our purpose. For everything, including us, there is reason. Being anything less than we were intended is a waste of something beautiful, something special.
It’s the footprints we leave behind that show the path of our purpose. Where will you leave your footprints? Where will you be called? How will you choose to live a truly purposeful life?