Personal mission: What matters most

A few years ago my then-15-year-old nephew interviewed me for a homework assignment. The assignment was about finding one's purpose and mission in life. My answers could have gone in a million different directions, but there was only one real answer that addressed what matters most in all I do personally and professionally. 

1. What is your mission in life?

The very short, but “big picture”, answer is to share Christ with others and build His kingdom.

2. How did you decide your mission?

A few years ago my answer to question one would have been very different. My mission would have been something very good and noble but all about me, and all about here and now. I realized that as a Christian my life is about Christ, not me. I evaluated my life from the viewpoint of eternity not just my life on earth and I realized that eternity is what matters so my life on earth has to prepare me for eternity. It can’t just be about my comfort or fulfillment now. And part of living for eternity includes being a witness for Him at all times and in many ways, such as being his hands and feet in serving those in need and using my time and talents to build His kingdom.

3. What gifts do you have that help you achieve this mission?

The biggest gift He’s given me is writing, which I use in many ways but they all amount to honoring and glorifying Him, regardless of the subject matter. God needs people everywhere, in different places and environments to be a light, and as long as I’m where He wants me to be I know that my work is serving the purpose of building His kingdom, even if I never know the full outcome until we’re in heaven.

4. What challenges have you faced in achieving the mission.

Living for Christ as opposed to living for your own comfort and pleasure isn’t easy from an earthly perspective. It requires self sacrifice, saying “no” quite a bit, both to yourself and to others, and letting go of certain dreams, which is ok, because God replaces our puny, selfish dreams with His big and amazing ones that are a blessing to others too. Living for Him can also include going through periods of intense trial, deprivation and loneliness. It means that many times you’re judged or very misunderstood. But the rewards of peace, knowing you’re in the center of God’s will and that more people will be in heaven because of your life are much greater than the temporary hardship.