Welcome back to our journey on purpose. Last time we came to the realisation that purpose is the meaning of life. Conversely, a life without purpose is a meaningless life. Give your life a meaning, discover your purpose.
Many people struggle in life because they are living a wrong life. Strange I know, but its true! As long As you are not living in your purpose, you are living a wrong life, and this has severe consequences. This is what I want to share with you today, the consequences of living out of your purpose. Let me share a short story I got from Shana Shutte. I think it helps put things in perspective.
There once was a man who netted three trout from a mountain stream and carefully placed them side-by-side on a thick patch of grass. Before he removed them from the water, they were like a liquid ballet in motion. Fluid. Graceful. Vibrant. Alive.
After he netted them, it was another story.
As the trout lay on the grass, they were motionless. Their eyes were fixed. They gasped for air, and they looked — and acted — stupid.
The man noticed they seemed unhappy, so he talked to them, hoping that his encouragement would change them.
“Little fish, don’t be sad. You’ll like the grass. Just try it out for a while.”
No movement. No response. No change.
A few more seconds passed. The man’s neighbor walked by. “Hey, Bob! Come and check out these fish!”
Bob sauntered over and the man explained that he was certain the fish could adjust. “I’m sure they could prosper here on the grass. Don’t you agree?”
“Why not?” Bob replied. So he also tried to tell the fish it would be good if they learned to like the grass. After all, he liked the grass. Why shouldn’t they?
Still, the fish didn’t blink. They just lay there looking dumber by the second.
Finally, a little boy approached exclaimed, “What are you doing? Put them back! They can’t be all they’ve been created to be when they are out of the water.”
Finally convinced, the man carefully placed each fish back in the stream. After splashing for a split second, all three swam away effortlessly. Again, it was like a liquid ballet. What ease! What grace! What beauty!
In that moment, the man realized that no matter how long the fish lay there they would never adjust to the grass, and would never be satisfied — no matter how much he (or anyone else) told them otherwise. Even if the fish tried to convince themselves they could learn to like the grass, they never would, and they would never prosper. In fact, they would eventually die.
Do you feel like a fish out of water? Your prolonged dissatisfaction, God-given gifts, passions and the voices of others could be telling you that you were created for another purpose. And like these fish, if you feel like you are dying inside, listen up. It could be just what you need to push you into another, more satisfying ocean.
So what are the consequences of living out of your purpose?
1. EVERYTHING IN LIFE BECOMES A STRUGGLE
Like the fish that were struggling to survive out of water, so is a person living outside their purpose. Your purpose is actually the environment you thrive in. It is the environment for your success.
When you are out of your purpose life becomes a daily struggle. Do you feel like lifeisjust one big never ending battle? It could be you are a fish out of water. It could be you are not in your purpose. When in water, fish move with ease and elegance. Out of the water movement becomes near impossible, a struggle. Are you struggling to make progress in life? It could be you are not in your purpose.
This is another result of living out of your purpose. No matter how much you try, you just can’t find satisfaction in life. No matter how much “success” you seem to be achieving, there will still be an emptiness within you. Success does not lie in material things. Success lies in fulfilling your purpose.
We are often amazed when we hear of a “successful” person confesses to being dissatisfied with life. “What’s wrong with him/her?” Purpose! As long as you are not living in your purpose, you can never find satisfaction in life. There will always be something missing.
3. PRODIGAL LIVING
The word prodigal actually means wasteful. Lack of purpose breeds waste, which in turn breeds poverty.
We are all familiar with the story of the prodigal son so I won’t go into great detail. But I would like to believe that the reason that young man wasted his inheritance was his lack of purpose in life. The late great Myles Munroe used to like saying, “Where purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable”. We tend to abuse resources when we have no idea of our purpose. Worse still, we end up abusing ourselves. The prodigal son abused himself by joining himself to pigs. He lowered himself to the level of a pig! Many people are abusing resources, relationships, talents and even themselves because they don’t know their purpose.
Check your life! Are you abusing yourself?
4. YOU DON’T EXPERIENCE THE BEST YOU
You are your best when you live in your purpose. It is within your purpose that all that locked up potential in you is unleashed! Many people, sadly, go to their graves without ever experiencing the greatness within them. There is a superman hidden within you! There is a hero inside you and he can only come out when you are living in your purpose.
Samson’s supernatural strength always came when he was in a moment of purpose. I believe there are gifts, talents and wisdom in you that will only be unleashed when you step out into your purpose. There is a better you that you and the world are waiting for. Discover your purpose and become a better you, an upgraded version.