Life

 Purpose

The central motivating aims of your life—the reasons you get up in the morning

 

 

Life`s Purpose Word Tag Cloud. Female open palm hand with the word PURPOSE floating above surrounded by a relevant word tag cloud on a soft blue flowing energy royalty free stock photo

 

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Your Life Purpose Is Not to Be Happy

3 harsh truths that will make your life better.

 
Eric Sangerma
 
Photo by Jeremy Perkins on Unsplash

Is a world dominated by entitled brats and selfish old men, happiness is the ultimate goal?

Would everything else fall to the wayside?

Consideration, kindness, responsibility to each other and to the planet — none of it matters, because people just keep chasing after happiness like a junky running after his next fix.

 

But like every other high, happiness is short-lived.

Once it’s gone, it leaves your soul empty.

This is why so many people keep trying out pseudoscientific bullshit like dopamine fasting.

They know something’s wrong, but they don’t know what they’re missing. The truth is that they’ve been lied to.

 

The Search for Constant Happiness Is Based on Lies

Why do people get stuck in a wild goose chase, making happiness their ultimate and only goal?

 

It’s because they fall for these false beliefs:

1. “You can ignore the bad things in life if you surround yourself with distractions.”

2. “With enough money, you can be happy all the time.”

3. “If you’re not happy 24/7, something is wrong with you.”

 

Let’s counter this with some cold hard facts.

1. Grief Is Inevitable

Fear of death is everywhere in our society, but we rarely talk about it.

The ugly truth is that death is coming for us all.

And before that comes old age (well, if we’re lucky).

 

It’s impossible to look or feel young forever.

It doesn’t matter how many anti-aging products you buy.

Hell, it doesn’t even matter if you eat well and exercise daily, though it will certainly prolong your life a little bit.

 

You can’t control the passage of time.

You can’t cheat your way out of getting older.

 

As psychology professor Steve Taylor points out in his article about near-death experiences:

“Encounters with death indeed can sometimes wake us up.

They snap us out of a trance-like state in which we are indifferent to life and unaware of the blessings in our lives.

But I think we can gain some of these benefits by simply contemplating death.

In the Buddhist tradition, monks in ancient times were advised to meditate in cemeteries, or to sit down next to any dead, decaying bodies they found on their travels.

They were advised to contemplate that one day this would be their fate too, as a way of becoming aware of the impermanence of life and the foolishness of being attached to the world.”

 

We can’t all be Buddhist monks.

But we all grieve for somebody — a relative, a mentor, a friend who died before their time.

So my advice is this: remember those who are gone.

It’s not a happy way to spend an afternoon, but it is profoundly valuable.

 

Plus, like Dr. Taylor says, contemplating death can wake you up from a trance.

Are you contributing anything useful to this world, or just banging away at a keyboard 5 (or 6 or 7) days a week?

 

2. Money Doesn’t Buy Happiness (To Be Fair, Neither Does Poverty)

If there’s one statistic everyone should know about, it’s this:

Having a higher income improves your emotional wellbeing, but “there is no further progress beyond an annual income of ~$75,000.

Low income exacerbates the emotional pain associated with such misfortunes as divorce, ill health, and being alone.

We conclude that high income buys life satisfaction but not happiness and that low income is associated both with low life evaluation and low emotional well-being.” (Kahneman, Deaton 2010)

 

Lots of everyday problems boil down to a lack of money.

Being poor can ruin your health, your happiness, your ability to ever relax and take a break.

People who say you don’t need any material possessions to be happy are bullshitting you.

 

But if you have a degree of security and comfort, money stops making a difference.

From there, there’s no extra benefit to getting an impressive car or going on a lavish vacation.

You’ll keep on living the same imperfect life as everyone else, you’ll just be able to hide it better.

 

Billionaires suffer from constant stress too — and I’m not saying we should feel sorry for them, it’s just that they’re living proof: becoming filthy rich can’t keep away the ugly parts of life.

Just remember the messy, expensive divorce stories that keep popping up.

Some of them sabotage their own lives with wild excesses, others simply don’t see changes coming because they’re too busy worrying about the next quarter’s profits.

 

3. Everyone Feels Unhappy Sometimes, Especially the People Who Keep Pretending to Be Happy

Many people pretend to be lighthearted and confident for profit.

Look at influencers on social media.

They hook you by making you feel good about yourself.

When you click on Follow and give them likes and shares (and donations), you’re one of the good ones.

You’re enlightened, you’re on the path toward true happiness.

 

But you’ll never be quite as happy as they are.

That’s on purpose, and the goal is to make you feel like a fraud and a failure.

 

Being on social media creates a negative self-image, and whatever you may have heard, this problem isn’t exclusive to teenage girls.

We all feel a bit shittier about our lives when we spend time looking at other people’s (carefully curated and edited) photos.

 

But it’s not just about influencers — there’s a pressure to be happy coming from all directions.

Ads pressure us to check out the next Netflix show, to keep up with the newest pop culture trends. This is all done in the name of feeling good, but the result is that we’re likelier to become depressed and isolated when we put entertainment above everything else.

 

“People jump back and forth in pursuit of pleasures only because they see the emptiness of their lives more clearly than they do the emptiness of whichever new entertainment attracts them.” — Blaise Pascal

 

Where Can You Find Purpose Instead?

I can’t tell you what your life purpose is.

I just have one question: have you ever taken the time to decide who you are and what you stand for?

 

Perhaps you’re too busy chasing material benefits, mimicking influencers, and following disappointing or unfulfilling paths because other people seem to be happy with them.

None of these life choices will serve you in the long term.

Fixating on happiness while excluding other considerations can only lead to disappointment.

 

Take a few days (weeks, months) and think about your Big Why.

What drives you?

What’s the thing that gets you up in the morning and keeps you going when you’re tired and worn down?

 

The real joy in life comes from finding your true purpose and aligning it with what you do every single day.

 

As for Me…

After much contemplation, I’ve arrived at these principles that give my life meaning.

Maybe some of them will resonate with you.

  • Independent Thought

I always avoid following the herd.

I never act against my conscience or my truth, even though that makes me unpopular in some circles.

  • Meaningful Actions

Research tells us that meaningfulness is the most important aspect of every job.

Serving something larger than yourself brings a sense of perspective.

This leads to a deeper, more sustained kind of emotional wellbeing, even if it doesn’t immediately make you happy.

  • Love

More than anything else, my love for my family serves as my main purpose.

I take care of them, they take care of me, and that creates a basis for a more loving attitude in general.

On some days, the most profound purpose in my life is to smile at a stranger and make their day better.

If I could send a message to my past self, back when he was confused and trying desperately to be happy, here’s what I’d say:

 

Make time for yourself to practice a loving attitude in everything you do; stop letting yourself be pulled in all directions. Be compassionate, stand for something, make a difference.

 

 

 

Why Were You Born?  A Christian Theory.

by Erik Jones

 

Have you ever asked questions like:

Why was I born?

Does life have meaning?

Why did God create man?

Does the Bible reveal the purpose of human life?

 

 

baby lying on gray textile

 
Every life has two bookends—the day we’re born and the day we die.

We enter this world weak and helpless, but each of us is born with tremendous potential.

Our parents likely watched us and wondered: What will our baby do with his or her life? What kind of person will he or she become?

 

Ironically, we often end our lives much like we began—weak and helpless.

As death nears, we typically ponder our past.

 

What did I do with my life?

What kind of person was I?

 

And, by the time life ends, most of us have brooded over the underlying, age-old question: What is the ultimate meaning of human life? Why was I even born?

 

What is the meaning of life?

It’s a demanding question, and many dismiss it as simply unanswerable.

Those who more seriously attempt to explore the meaning of life often settle on experiences, such as finding a fulfilling personal calling, accomplishing something emotionally satisfying, loving and being loved, or maybe just being a “good person.”

But those stop short of anything beyond this life.

While nothing’s wrong with those thoughts, in our moments of deepest reflection, especially when facing our own mortality, do those answers really satisfy?

 

Is death truly the final bookend of life?

Or does a greater purpose for human life exist, one that transcends this short, physical life? If so, what is it?

Those are the biggest questions of life.

 

Theories about the meaning of life

One of the more subtle effects of the theory of evolution and the philosophy of atheism is that fewer and fewer people consider whether we were created and designed with an ultimate purpose.

After all, evolutionary theory eliminates, and atheistic philosophy rejects, the idea that any higher being ordained a meaning for our existence!

 

If life resulted from a random bolt of lightning hitting primordial slime and setting off a series of gradual mutations from simple to complex over time, does it have a purpose?

If humanity rose to be the globe’s prime inhabitant only through natural selection based on survival of the fittest, can anyone conclude his or her life has a transcendent purpose?

If not, we can find meaning only in whatever each of us settles upon as significant.

 

When Buzzfeed.com polled a number of atheists, many said they had indeed devised for themselves meaning for their lives.

 

They offered a variety of examples, such as:

  • Having a positive effect on friends and family.
  • Being kind, learning, sharing knowledge, relieving suffering.
  • Squeezing as much happiness and fun out of life as possible.
  • Focusing on the “here and now” and practicing the freedom to do as we want.

However, many conceded that even though they had created their own personal meaning since they believe life randomly occurred, then, by definition, it has no common, overarching purpose, no grand master plan.

 

But are these ideas of limited, self-defined human meaning true?

Or is this world and your life the result of a perfect Creator who designed and placed us on earth for a reason?

Is there an answer to the biggest question of all—why were you born?

God answers, Yes!

But in order to find it, we have to begin … at the beginning.

(To learn more about man’s quest to find meaning in life, read our article “Purpose of Life.”)

 

Back to the beginning to understand the purpose of life

John 1:1 reveals: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” In other words, before anything was created, God the Father and the Word (who later came to earth as Jesus Christ, verse 14) existed.

 

Through eternity, these two spirit beings existed together, unlimited in power and perfect in character.

Then God began to create.

Romans 1:20 tells us that God’s “invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead.”

By looking at the world around us, we can easily deduce that the Father and the Word are builders! Our human drive to build everything from robots to relationships simply reflects the nature of God our Creator.

 

The earliest recorded creations were angels—beautiful and amazing spirit beings made to serve God and the humans who would come later (Hebrews 1:13-14).

But eventually, one-third of them, following a fellow angel called Lucifer in the New King James Version of the Bible, rose in an ill-fated rebellion against God.

By rebelling they became known as Satan (“Adversary”) and the demons (Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:12-15; Revelation 12:4).

Their revolt, though, did not thwart God.

He had other plans, greater plans; and at some point, He moved to create what we now see.

 

What does it mean to be created in “the image of God”?

 

Being created in God’s image means that we have elements of His likeness and thinking abilities.

 

Genesis tells us that on the sixth day of creation God formed the first human, and within this account lies a huge key to unlocking the true meaning of human life.

God said, “‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Genesis 1:26-27).

 

You have probably heard these words, but have you grasped their full significance?

 

God created humankind in His image, in His likeness, with abilities that are like His abilities.

Most important, He gave us elements of His mind—higher intelligence, creativity, artistic appreciation, and emotions.

 

He didn’t give such characteristics to animals.

Instead of choice and creativity, they have instinct—and that’s a key difference between the human kingdom (created after the God kind) and the animal kingdom (each created after its own kind).

 

Being created in God’s image means that we have elements of His likeness and thinking abilities, just on a much smaller and weaker level.

We have His form, but not His substance.

We’re mortal, flesh and blood (Genesis 2:7); He’s immortal, all-powerful spirit (John 4:24).

We possess limited intellect and creativity, while God is limitless (Job 42:2; 1 Corinthians 2:11).

To learn more about being created in God’s image, read “The Purpose of Man.”

 

Can man become like God?

But God’s creation did not end at Eden! After Genesis, we continually learn more about His intent, and it’s not to create physical beings with some of His characteristics.
Why were you born?

To eventually become like Him, sharing spirit life on His level of existence!

 

The apostle John made this eye-opening statement: “We shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2).

Imagine being like God!

How can this be?

 

Other verses reveal that before God gives us that level of power, we must learn to think like Him (Philippians 2:5) and to live and act like Him (Matthew 5:48; 1 John 2:6).

 

And it has to be by our choice!

 

God did not create moral automatons, human robots are programmed to do what is right.

Instead, He gave mankind—beginning with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden—free moral choice, embodied by two trees: the “tree of life,” representing moral goodness according to God’s standard, and the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” representing humans choosing for themselves what is right and wrong.

 

They chose to reject God (Genesis 3:6); and through that choice, the Bible tells us, sin (the breaking of God’s law) began to infect all humanity (Romans 5:12; 1 John 3:4).

Sin remains the obstacle that stands between us and God’s purpose for us (Romans 6:23).

 

Christianity is all about overcoming this barrier to achieving our purpose.

It starts with repentance and forgiveness of our past sins through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice and is followed by baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit—God’s Spirit.

This allows us to begin changing our character.

Embarking on this path of change—called conversion—is our part in fulfilling God’s purpose for us.

 

Before God will give us His unlimited power, we must willingly surrender ourselves to Him and develop His perfect character.

That means, through a lifelong process, we put off our natural ways of thinking—which tend to resist God (Romans 8:7; Colossians 3:8-9)—and “put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him” (Colossians 3:10).

 

In other words, while we’re physically created “in His image,” we must now be created in His image spiritually—developing His moral and spiritual character.

That’s the highest aim for a human in this life—to reshape one’s spiritual character in His image, imprinting His way of thinking and acting into every aspect of our lives.

 

baby under purple blanket

 

Transformed to be like God

Because the next step is rarely understood, hundreds of myths have arisen that try to explain the purpose of life.

 

God designed the human body to eventually die (Ezekiel 18:4; Hebrews 9:27)—but not forevermore. Jesus promised to return to earth and perform one of the greatest miracles of all time: bringing the dead back to life.

Christians through the ages have drawn inspiration and motivation from this hope, being assured that by faithfully submitting to God and developing His character, they will be resurrected and take the last step in putting on the image of God.

 

In 1 Corinthians 15:42-46 the apostle Paul reveals four aspects of this transition. We will be:

  • Changed from corruption (physical aging and decay) to incorruption (nonphysical life).
  • Changed from dishonor (imperfection) to glory (perfection).
  • Changed from weakness to power.
  • Changed from a natural (physical) body to a spiritual body.

In other words, a transition from the human level to the God level!

We do not, and cannot, have these four aspects of God’s image now, but verse 49 makes an astounding statement: “As we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man [Christ].”

To learn more about what it means to be a child of God, read our article “Children of God.”

 

What does it mean to be a child of God?

What amazing insight!

God doesn’t merely want angel-like servants—He desires a family of children, like Him, with whom He will share eternity!

A family of beings He can build with and relate to on an equal plane.

That is the answer to the question, why were you born? But in order for God to have a real family, the family members have to be perfect, like Him.

 

It turns out that what God wanted—to turn physical beings into members of His family—would take time, enormous sacrifice, and the willing participation of the created beings.

Think about it.

If He created humans perfect, but without free choice, they could never truly be on His level.

They would simply be automatons composed of spirit, programmed to be perfect.

On the other hand, if He created physical beings like Himself and then gave them free choice, they would have amazing potential—yes, the potential to rebel and become like Satan and the demons, but also with the potential to choose to become like Him.

 

So God, from the beginning, designed a wonderful and remarkable plan to reproduce beings like Himself—through a process that ensures those beings will truly become perfect for eternity.

 

Yes, our incredible, real purpose is to be elevated to God’s level as full members of His family.

He wants “sons and daughters” (2 Corinthians 6:18). He’s in the process of “bringing many sons to glory” (Hebrews 2:10).

Think about what this really means.

When you have a child, that child is like youhe or she shares not just your form, but your DNA.

 

When we are born into God’s family, we will be children of God.

We will be glorified (elevated) to the same level of existence as our Father and our Elder Brother, Jesus Christ.

God’s purpose and design are that you become a partaker of “the divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4)—by analogy, that you share God’s divine DNA.

That means becoming fully spirit, just like God (John 3:6).

 

Those who achieve this purpose will be given exciting opportunities that are beyond full comprehension now.

But imagine things such as serving as “kings and priests” (Revelation 5:10) and coming to “inherit all things” (Revelation 21:7) in the Kingdom of God, in an eternal existence of productivity, building and growth!

This is God’s revelation of why you were born, and it’s so much bigger than anything any mere human can contrive for himself!

This can fill your life with meaning and purpose.

And, if you embrace it, it can change everything in your life!

 

This article only skimmed the surface of a huge topic.

Because of the importance of this subject, we’ve written an entire booklet, God’s Purpose for You: Discovering Why You Were Born, explaining it in greater detail.

 

The booklet thoroughly answers these questions:

  • What is a human being?
  • Why is there such a wide gap between God and man?
  • How can the gap between God and man be bridged and closed?
  • What does it mean to be in God’s family?
  • What will God’s children do for eternity?

To discover the answers to these crucial questions, download your free copy.

To learn more about why you were born and how that answer can change your life, you can also download our booklets The Mystery of the Kingdom and The Last Enemy: What Really Happens After Death? 

 

 

 

What Is the Real Purpose of Life?

by Mike Bennett

 

Why were you born?

We all hope that our lives have meaning, though most are still searching for the purpose of life.

What does God intend for us and our future?

 

silhouette of person standing on rock surrounded by body of water

 

A sense of purpose?

Many of us keep ourselves so busy between work, chores, and our leisure activities that there’s really little time to think deep thoughts about the meaning of life.

 

But occasionally, somewhere in the back of our minds, we have a nagging feeling that there must be something more.

There must be a purpose for our lives—something we were meant to be or accomplish.

 

Thoughts like these can come to our minds at those emotionally charged transition periods of our life: when we leave home, get our first job, get married, have children, have an empty nest, or retire.

 

Even more, questions about the purpose of life come when we lose a loved one or friend.

Being reminded of our own mortality can lead us to analyze our lives and seek deeper meaning to it all.

 

Direction in life

What is the real purpose of life? It’s the most important philosophical question; yet at the same time, it is deeply practical. Knowing our purpose gives direction to our lives.

 

As U.S. President John F. Kennedy said, “Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.”

 

And as pioneering futurist Alvin Toffler said, “You’ve got to think about big things while you’re doing small things, so that all the small things go in the right direction.”

 

A life full of purpose is a life of vitality, excitement, and ultimately success.

So what is the purpose of life—of your life?

 

Seeking the meaning of life: a grand experiment

Is the purpose of life to pursue happiness—through comedy, music, and other entertainment? Through mood-altering substances?

Through enjoying fine food and other perks of the rich and famous?

 

Or what about through great building projects or other great accomplishments that will make a mark on this world and be remembered for years to come?

 

Many have attempted these and similar pursuits in their attempt to find true purpose in life.

One wealthy man, in particular, experimented with all these things and more, and still came to a disconcerting conclusion:

“Whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them.

I did not withhold my heart from any pleasure, for my heart rejoiced in all my labor; and this was my reward from all my labor.

Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done and on the labor in which I had toiled; And indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind” (Ecclesiastes 2:10-11).

 

Is this all there is?

God had given King Solomon great wealth and great wisdom.

His experiments in seeking purpose in life were not half-hearted!

And he did find some satisfaction in the things he tried.

But he, like the rest of us in quiet moments of reflection, still wondered, Is this all there is? Are these physical and temporary things really why I was born?

It is all so fleeting and temporary—like trying to catch the wind.

 

If all the money in the world can’t buy a meaningful life or give us its purpose, what can deprivation teach us?

 

Man’s Search for Meaning: a view from the depths

Viktor E. Frankl experienced the depths of human misery in the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II.

Soon after the war, he wrote Man’s Search for Meaning and described the degrading and dehumanizing conditions prisoners experienced.

Even during a frozen predawn march punctuated with blows from rifle butts, his mind searched for meaning through vivid thoughts about his wife:

 

“A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life, I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers.

The truth—that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire.

Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love.

I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in the contemplation of his beloved.

In a position of utter desolation, when a man cannot express himself in positive action, when his only achievement may consist in enduring his sufferings in the right way—an honorable way—in such a position man can, through loving contemplation of the image he carries of his beloved, achieve fulfillment” (pp. 56–57).

 

What a beautiful, yet tragic, though.

Viktor Frankl’s wife died in the camps, and he never had the chance to see her again.

 

Love and family

Dr. Frankl and the poets were on to something.

Love and family are essential elements of the true purpose of life.

But there’s so much more to it than Dr. Frankl experienced in those fleeting moments of bliss.

 

In fact, there’s much more to life’s purpose than any human being, in the very best of circumstances, has experienced yet during this short lifetime.

 

God’s essential characteristic is love.

He created us and gives us purpose in life because He loves us.

And He wants us to learn the eternal joys of this complete and perfect love!

All of us, whether in a concentration camp, a beautiful chateau, or a cancer ward, face a mortal enemy that robs us of life and purpose.

That enemy is death. (Why does God allow that enemy?

Why does God allow us to die? See “Why Do We Die?”)

 

But the purpose God has for our lives goes beyond our physical bodies and our temporary lives. God offers human beings the chance to prepare now to have a purposeful, meaningful life—forever!

 

Eternity in their hearts

God has put “eternity in their hearts” (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

He didn’t create us to burn like a candle for just a short time, but—if we will accept the incredible mission and purpose He has for us—to shine “like the stars forever and ever” (Daniel 12:3)!

 

God’s essential characteristic is love (1 John 4:8).

He created us and gives us purpose in life because He loves us. And He wants us to learn the eternal joys of this complete and perfect love!

 

And as we explore the Bible, just when we think it can’t get any better, it does!

Not only does God want to love us and to love us forever—He wants us to become His children!

Not just servants, and not even just friends of God—but His literal children!

 

Children of God

“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!” (1 John 3:1).

Jesus Christ is not ashamed to call His faithful followers “brethren,” and His plan and our purpose include helping bring “many sons to glory” (Hebrews 2:10-11).

 

God is expanding His family, and the purpose of life is to become part of that family!

He wants us to be His children and heirs forever, helping Him in His work.

 

We may not fully understand this meaning and purpose of life now.

As Paul wrote, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).

 

But the glimpses God gives and our trust in His goodness reveal that being children of God will be beyond our wildest dreams. Working with our Father will be the most meaningful work possible!

 

Why is it important to find your purpose in life?

Some have derided Christians for being so heavenly-minded that they were no earthly good.

But true Christianity and true understanding of the purpose of life is very practical and beneficial for this life.

The Bible teaches that this life is preparation for eternity.

We are to learn to treat others as we want to be treated—for eternity! We fulfill our responsibilities and grow in the godly, righteous character that will allow us to be like our Father—forever!

 

Preparing for eternity

We are in training now for an incredible inheritance beyond our comprehension.

The things we suffer now prepare us for that purpose.

Tests and trials are all part of that training process to help us be ready to live and reign with Christ for a thousand years—and beyond (Revelation 20:4)!

 

Looking back, we will consider, as the apostle, Paul said, “that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).

 

King David foresaw this incredible future with God: “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11).

 

The apostle John was also given glimpses of this amazing future—a vision of our real purpose in life that we need to keep burning brightly in our mind’s eye:

“Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people.

God, Himself will be with them and be their God.

“‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.

There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.’

“Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new’ . . .

“‘He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son’” (Revelation 21:2-5, 7).

 

So what is the real purpose of life?

The meaning and purpose of life are to prepare to become the children of God, so we can enjoy eternity working together with our loving Father in the most exciting, meaningful endeavors imaginable!

 

Explore in your own Bible this amazing purpose of your life! We hope the resources on this website will help you understand and act on the purpose God has for you.

 

You can learn more by reading the other articles, like “What Is the Meaning of Life.”

 

 

 

The Purpose of Man

by Jim Franks

 

Who am I?

Why am I here?

What happens when I die?

These are the greatest of all mysteries.

The Bible’s surprising answers show how humans will really enter the spirit world.

 

Discover your life's purpose and free yourself from the trap of compulsive thinking with this online course fr… | Life purpose, Spiritual words, New things to learn

Albert Einstein is considered one of the most brilliant thinkers of the 20th century.

He was once asked about his brilliance, and he explained that it wasn’t that he was so smart, but that he was curious and asked a lot of questions.

 

He is reported to have said: “If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask, for once I know the proper question I could solve the problem in less than five minutes.”

 

Finding the right questions

 

If someone asked you to explain the purpose of man, what questions would you ask?

 

Upon reflection, I believe the purpose of man can be examined by answering three questions:

1. Who am I?

2. Why am I here?

3. What happens when I die?

 

If you can correctly answer these three questions, you will have solved the greatest of all mysteries.

Where can we go to research such a mystery?

Evolution and the belief in blind chance offer no satisfying answers.

As we will see, the great religions present a variety of ideas that can’t all be right.

So we turn to the book that claims to be from the Creator God to explore this essential knowledge only God can reveal. (Why believe the Bible? See our free booklet Is the Bible True?)

 

In Psalm 8:3-6 David wrote about the creation of man and spoke about the potential of human beings.

“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon, and the stars, which You have ordained, what is the man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him?

For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor.

You have made him have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet.”

What does God tell us about our future?

If you look at the Bible and solely the Bible, you’ll find a different answer than you get from religion.

 

Some varied human views

 

Consider the Catholic view, taken from the website “Catholic Answers.”

“Although physical human bodies die, human souls never die.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that every spiritual soul ‘is immortal: It does not perish when it separates from the body at death, and it will be reunited with the body at the final Resurrection’ (CCC 366).

So at the moment of death, the soul separates from the body, is judged immediately, and enters either heaven (immediately or through purgatory) or hell.

 

‘Each man receives his eternal retribution in his immortal soul at the very moment of his death, in a particular judgment that refers his life to Christ: either entrance into the blessedness of heaven—through a purification or immediately—or immediate and everlasting damnation (CCC 1022).”

 

Since Protestantism involves many different denominations, there are different ideas about what happens when you die.

But, in general, Protestants only differ from Catholics in their rejection of purgatory.

They also believe in an immortal soul that at death either goes to heaven for eternal bliss or to hell for eternal punishment.

 

Most eastern religions—Hinduism, Buddhism, and others—embrace the concept of reincarnation.

This is the belief that when you die, your immortal soul lives here on earth in a different form.

This new form may be human, or it may be an animal or even an insect.

 

Then there is the atheist view. Atheists do not believe in an afterlife.

They believe this life is all there is.

But they believe mankind will continue to evolve and things will get better.

 

One well-known atheist, Richard Dawkins, concludes that religion is nothing more than a useless, and sometimes dangerous, evolutionary accident.

He is joined in this view by other best-selling atheists, such as Sam Harris, who wrote The End of Faith, and Daniel Dennett, a philosopher at Tufts University, who wrote Breaking the Spell.

 

These contradictory human answers can’t all be right.

Are any of them correct?

To understand the answer to the purpose of man, let’s answer the three questions from the Bible, beginning with “Who am I?”

 

Who am I?

According to the Bible, man is composed of spirit, soul, and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

The body is the physical shell in which he lives.

The breath of life added to the physical body makes a living soul (Genesis 2:7, King James Version). And the spirit (1 Corinthians 2:11) comes from God Himself.

 

This “spirit in man” isn’t a separate person, nor is it an immortal soul.

It cannot function on its own.

It needs a living body to interact with.

This spirit in man returns to God at death (Ecclesiastes 12:7), making possible a resurrection.

 

Why am I here?

This second question is equally important.

We find in Scripture that humans were created by God, and they were created after the God kind.

 

By that, we mean man was created in the image of God, but not of the substance of God.

Man is flesh and blood and not spirit.

He was not created after the animal kind, as we read about in Genesis 1.

 

“Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth” (Genesis 1:26). And in Genesis 2:7, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul” (King James Version).

 

We see that man was not given an immortal soul.

He is, in fact, a soul, a living soul that is subject to death (Ezekiel 18:4).

 

Man was created with the potential to become a spirit being and a child of God.

Man was created with the potential to become a spirit being and a child of God.

Paul writes in Ephesians: “For this reason, I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named” (Ephesians 3:14-15; see also Hebrews 2:9-11).

Paul, in writing to Timothy, declares: “I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15).

 

The Greek word translated “house” here is Oikos, which means “the inmates of a house, all the persons forming one family, a household” (Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon).

The amazing future of mankind is to become part of this family of God, of which the Church is a physical representation.

Now we get to the final question.

 

What happens when I die?

Scripture speaks of a resurrection from the dead. “So also is the resurrection of the dead.

The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption.

It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power.

It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body” (1 Corinthians 15:42-44).

 

This is our human potential—to be born into a family of spirit sons and daughters of God (2 Corinthians 6:18) through the resurrection from the dead.

 

Now let’s put it all together. Setting aside all the preconceived ideas, things taught by religion, let’s look at Scripture. By doing so, we learn the following:

 

Man was created physical, of the dust of the ground.

God breathed into him the breath of life and man became a “living soul.”

As a living soul, he is also capable of dying; in fact, he will die.

He also has a “spirit in man” that makes him different from any animal and gives him the potential for eternal life as a spirit being in the family of God.

 

When a man dies, his body decays, but his spirit returns to God.

This spirit is incapable of independent action or independent thought.

It works with the human mind to give man the ability to reason and make decisions.

Animals are incapable of such reasoning ability.

 

Once you are dead, your mind ceases to function, and you are incapable of any further action until the resurrection (Ecclesiastes 9:10).

Job asked a most important question: “If a man dies, shall he live again?

All the days of my hard service I will wait, till my change comes” (Job 14:14).

What change? The change from mortal to immortal!

 

When Jesus Christ returns to this earth, the spirit from those Christians who have died will be united with a new spirit body.

This is called the “first resurrection” (Revelation 20:5). Since it is called the “first,” we are assured that there will be others to follow.

God has a plan that will include a resurrection for everyone, but each in his own order (1 Corinthians 15:23).

 

The right questions and answers

Albert Einstein was on to something when he declared how important it is to find the correct question. If you don’t know the correct question, you will most likely not find the right answer.

The purpose of man is embodied in the answers to three questions:

Who am I?

Why am I here?

What happens when I die?

 

We don’t have to speculate or wonder about the answers.

They are right in front of us; all we have to do is read them.

Most people have no clear idea what the purpose of man really is, and they have no clear understanding of what happens after death.

 

The Bible spells it out clearly.

The purpose for man—the very reason for our creation—is to become spirit beings in the family of God.

In a world of great darkness, death, and decay, eternal life as a spirit being is our only real hope.

 

For more on this subject, see the articles in the “What Is the Meaning of Life?” section of Life, Hope & Truth.

 

 

What Is Your Purpose In Life? (Real Examples Of Others)

Written by

 

discover your purpose in life featured image

Having a purpose in life is one of the fundamental factors of happiness.

 

Without it, you’ll live your life less focused, less efficient and you’ll often feel restless and stressed because you don’t feel aligned with the things you do.

This article is about different purposes in life, with actual examples and how you can define your purpose in life.

What are some examples of a purpose in life?

There are a lot of commonly known purposes in life, like:

  • Providing for your family
  • Living a successful life
  • Making positive connections with others and enjoying those around you
  • Traveling the world
  • Fighting the declining condition of our planet
  • Etc

But what is YOUR purpose?

You can’t just copy & paste one of these purposes and call it a day.

You have to find your own purpose in life.

In this article, I will show you how to discover and define your purpose in life, with actual examples of people that I’ve asked.

 

What is my purpose in life?

What is my purpose in life?

This question is very common but makes you think about what you truly want. Answers are usually a variation or combination of the following:

  • Success
  • Feeling loved
  • Having a positive impact on the lives of others
  • To be happy
  • Fortune

If you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking: “I want everything you just said!”

And without giving more thought to this question, you might plan out your life to be a successful and rich person with a huge positive impact on the world.

Because that sounds like a good purpose, right?

 

Why it’s important to truly discover your purpose

So here you are. You have a purpose “to become a successful and rich person with a huge positive impact on the world”.

 

You’ve written it down in your journal as one of your goals, and off you go.

 

Fast forward 10 years:

Let’s imagine you’re now successful and rich and have a huge influence on the world.

You have spent your early years building a company that develops – say – portable toilets, that people in poor countries can use.

Your company makes a nice profit, and people all around the world look up to you because you seem to be successful, rich and have a positive influence on the world.

 

You now check all the boxes of what you thought your purpose in life was 10 years ago.

But are you happy?

No.

Because in the process of fulfilling your life purpose, you’ve had to sacrifice other things, like:

  • Dating and finding a loving partner
  • Spending time with your family
  • Going on holiday with your friends
  • Getting kids
  • Traveling the world
  • Running a marathon
  • Etc.
  • Etc.

Even though your purpose in life wasn’t necessarily a bad purpose, there’s one problem with it: it wasn’t YOUR purpose in life.

Maybe your purpose in life was to simply build a loving family and to be happy?

That’s why it’s extremely important to discover your own purpose in life!

 

Discovering your purpose in life

People don’t wake up one day and have a “eureka” moment and suddenly know what their purpose in life is.

No, you have to discover your purpose by trial and error.

So how do you discover your purpose?

Not by sitting in a chair by the window.

You find it by doing things and taking action.

 

What’s important here is that you try new things.

If you haven’t yet discovered your purpose in life, then you are not going to find it by trying the same things over and over again.

 

It’s also important to know that your purpose in life and your job are not the same things.

Too many people look for a job that is simultaneously something that can fill their purpose in life.

A very small percentage of people find actual purpose in the work they do.

 

For example, I personally have a very simple purpose in life, and it has got nothing to do with my work!

That’s not to say that I hate my work, I just don’t regard it as something I’m passionate about.

 

Long story short: you have to discover your purpose in life by trying out new things.

If you feel like you haven’t yet found your purpose in life, that means you need to try something new that sparks your interest again.

 

Defining your purpose in life

You can’t copy & paste somebody else’s purpose in life and expect to be happy by doing the same things.

No, you have to define your purpose.

Just as much as happiness is something that’s unique for every single person, the purpose of life differs from person to person.

Elon Musk’s purpose in life might be to develop futuristic ideas into reality, while your purpose can be to just provide the best life to your family and children.

 

Copy & pasting the purpose of somebody that you respect and like will probably leave you unhappy and unfulfilled.

For example, I think Elon Musk is doing spectacular things, but I wouldn’t be happy if I were in his shoes.

My purpose in life is wildly different from his!

 

I have defined my own purpose in life, and I advise you to do the same!

 

Examples of life purpose statements

Even though you have to define your own purpose in life, it’s still interesting to read about other people’s purposes.

That’s why I’ve asked around to include examples of life purpose statements in this article.

I don’t want you to copy and paste these life purposes and make them your own.

I only want to show you how diversified life purpose statements can be!

Here are actual examples of life purpose statements of the people I asked!

 

“My purpose in life is to solve problems by changing the status quo”

 

You will love the story of how Michael Arnold found his purpose in life.

This is a great example of how straightforward your purpose in life can be.

I don’t remember my grandpa, he passed when I was 9 months old but I sat on his knee while Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon.

I always wanted to be an astronaut even studying Astronomy, Geology and Physics in high school.

But when I checked into the requirements of becoming an astronaut, I realized I had been lied to… I was told work hard and you can reach your dreams.

But there it was in black and white, maximum height 6’1”! I was 6’4”! I couldn’t be 3” shorter.

So, I decided to become an engineer and build taller spaceships, discovering my new purpose solving problems by changing the status quo.

 

“My purpose in life is making positive connections with others and enjoying those around you”

 

I got cancer age 30 and am currently grappling with this question.

My focus has completely shifted and I feel like the whole point of my life now is just 2 simple things:

 

This is what a Redditor answered when asked about her purpose in life. The first simple thing that she recognized:

Making positive connections with others and enjoying those around you.

It is a lot easier to sit on the couch and watch a feel-good show than it is to go have dinner with your in-laws when you are tired – but what is the point in sitting there watching TV?

We all waste way too much time doing crap like that.

Better to build meaningful connections while you can.

There are millions of super isolated people in the world as well who would kill to have someone to have dinner with.

The second purpose of her life is:

Squeezing every bit of enjoyment out of life.

I need to walk home – I can either take the subway for 5 minutes underground or I can walk 30 minutes through a park and tree-lined streets and truly enjoy it.

Maybe get an ice cream on the way.

I’d pick the fast way every time before, now I’m constantly looking for the most enjoyable route instead.

 

“My purpose in life is to teach other parents of kids with ADHD how to positively parent to help their kids”

 

My oldest (who are 18 and 21) were really difficult kids.

I didn’t know until they were about 10 years old that they had ADHD.

I probably made every parenting mistake possible as a result.

It wasn’t easy.

I became a therapist and as a result, specialized in ADHD, specifically in parenting.

 

This is the story of Merriam Saunders, who found her own purpose in life is helping other parents deal with ADHD.

What I realized was that by constantly reprimanding my own children for behavior outside their control, I was ruining their self-esteem and leaving them (and, frankly, me) feeling like failures. Instead of asking them to change, I needed to ask it of myself.

I changed my parenting approach to one of finding the things they were doing right, scaffolding the things they weren’t, and letting them make mistakes without shame.

We became a happier family for it, and they are now well adjusted and academically succeeding.

 

“My purpose in life is to make things”

 

This idea was the center of my thoughts for the past few years.

And I did a lot of testing out who I was and what I wanted out of life.

Trying on different careers and always second guessing myself.

And I was struggling and unhappy and went through a lot of different situations to figure this out.

 

Find a career, find a partner, find something else to fill the void in my life.

 

This is the story of another Redditor.

This shows that a purpose in life doesn’t have to be sophisticated or impressive.

We don’t need to one-up each other with a bigger and better purpose.

You need to find what your own purpose is. What makes you happy?

 

The example continues:

But the idea of making things was always there.

Even as a kid just fucking around or even when I was at my most depressed as an adult.

I always turned to making things.

Make ceramics, make sculptures, make music, make a garden, make good food, make a book, make my own clothes.

Make something that didn’t exist.

I make things because that’s how I understand myself in this world.

It soothes me.

It shows me that I’m strong. It comforts me, in a mental and physical sense.

 

It makes me proud and it makes me happy.

It’s simple, but it seems to be the one true thread in my life that makes absolute sense. And it’s a path I can follow without doubting myself.

 

“My purpose in life is to use my writing to better the world”

 

For a class in high school we had to write a mission statement for our lives.

Mine was simple: to use my writing to better the world.

And I have tried to live up to that.

I have written about the environment, diversity and bullying as well as a host of other topics.

But I was happiest when I wrote something that addressed a problem and even happier when I would get feedback saying that my writing touched someone.

 

This is the story of Walter Meyer, who is an author and speaks about anti-bullying.

His purpose has slowly changed into something broader.

This shows that we don’t have a single purpose in life, but that it is something that evolves as we grow and try out new things in life.

 

Like this:

A few years ago, I fell into a part-time job working for a nonprofit.

At times, the job has gotten in the way of my writing, but I also know I am making a difference in my community and getting kudos for it.

So I slightly modified my life mission statement: to better the world.

 

I still write and use that as a major tool, but I teach, put on seminars and exhibits and other events to educate the public.

I am at my happiest when I am doing what I love, getting paid for it, and getting feedback saying I am doing the right thing.

We only have a limited amount of time in life so I want to make the most of my years.

And because any of us might go tomorrow, I would like to think that I have left a mark in many lives and will leave my little corner of the world better than I found it.

 

“My purpose in life is to empower myself to empower others”

 

As a recovering perfectionist, anxiety warrior, and depression fighter, my purpose in life is to empower myself to empower others.

I define my purpose in life as a continual journey of becoming the best possible version of myself.

 

By doing this, I can help other people become the best possible version of themselves.

This is the story of Nicole, who reached out to me with her life purpose example.

I personally feel connected to her purpose in life, as I am also constantly looking to be the best version of myself.

 

“My life doesn’t have a purpose, and I don’t want it to”

 

My life doesnt have a purpose, and I don’t want it to.

A purpose puts too much pressure on me.

I just want to be able to say I lived a happy, ethical, and compassionate life.

If I do, then I will have hopefully improved the world for a few people, animals, and the planet. That is what really matters, I think.

 

This is another interesting take on a purpose in life by a Redditor.

Instead of having a clearly defined purpose, she’d much rather like to be happy above anything else.

 

She continues:

I see too many people driving themselves mad trying to change the world.

They put all their happiness on the line for their “purpose” and end up miserable.

Too many people want to be remembered after they die, but I don’t care because I don’t think it really matters. I’ll be dead so I will have no idea if people remember me!

So I just focus on being a happy, good person, because I am the only thing I can truly control. ?

 

This last example is actually pretty funny when you think of it.

Why would I include it in this article, if it directly seems to counter the point that I’m trying to make?

 

Well, maybe this article is not so much about finding a purpose, but more about finding things in life that make you the happiest you can be.

 

These examples have shown you that the following things can be seen as a purpose in life:

  • Solving problems by thinking outside the box
  • Making positive connections with others and enjoying those around you
  • Teaching other parents how to deal with ADHD
  • Making things
  • Leaving the world a better place
  • Empowering others
  • Providing for your family
  • Living a successful life
  • Etc

But these things can all be thought of as things that simply make you a happier person.

 

Happiness is a purpose

You see, these purposes in our lives are only there because we have reason to believe that we’ll be happy when we either:

  • Chase these purposes, or
  • Reach these purposes

Before I started to track my happiness, I wanted – among others – to become rich and financially free.

Why?

Because I was working a job that I absolutely hated.

 

During the last 5 years, my happiness has moved quite a bit (this is an understatement).

Throughout this time, I constantly forced myself to think about these questions:

  • What is my purpose in life?
  • What makes me happy?

I’ve learned that it’s not so much that I wanted to be rich.

I just wanted to not have to work a job that I didn’t like.

Instead of focusing on a vague pipedream (quitting my horrible job with enough money in the bank), I focused on actively steering my life in the best direction right away.

 

What did I do?

  • I steered my career in a different direction.
  • I focused on being happy now, instead of only planning for my future happiness.

A fun example:

When my girlfriend and I were in a bad long-distance relationship, I noticed that running long distances made me extremely happy.

On a whim, I signed up for a marathon that was just 3 weeks away.

Running a marathon had always been on my bucket list, but it was only when I re-evaluated my happiness that I decided to be bold.

 

3 weeks later, I crossed the finish line feeling broken, shattered, and physically dead.

 

Was it the smartest decision I ever made?

Probably not, but I still did it.

The result?

Running long distances is still something that I dearly love, and I’m about to run my 5th marathon in 1 month!

 

Don’t worry, I’m much better prepared this time. (Update: I barely finished it as it was a LOT harder than I expected. Still an amazing experience though!)

 

The point of this story is – and this is where I might sound cheesy – that it’s truly the journey that matters much more than the destination.

You can spend your whole life working towards something that you think you want (a so-called purpose), while you should really focus on being happy now!

 

Life is just too short to only focus on eventually reaching that purpose.

You have to start focusing on your happiness NOW.

Enjoying the beautiful autumn 2018 november

With all that out of the way: here’s my purpose in life

My purpose in life is to live a long and happy life.

Sounds cheesy and anti-climatic?

 

Maybe, but here’s the thing:

Everything that I do is a result of my purpose in life.

There are a lot of other things that I feel are part of my purpose in life, like:

  • Making others happy
  • Making the world a better place
  • Spending as much time as possible with the people I love
  • Challenging myself intellectually and physically

But I only truly care about these things because they will eventually result in my main purpose, and that is to live a long and happy life.

If you’re wondering, this is how I try to be as happy as possible every single day of my life.

 

Closing words

This may not be the climax you were hoping for after reading this entire article, but it’s the way I feel. I hope I have at least shown you multiple aspects of this purpose in life.

If you now have a better idea of how you can discover and define your own purpose, then I have reached my goal!?