“A rabbi walking through a city was stopped by a centurion. The centurion asked, ‘Who are you and what are you doing?’ The rabbi thought for a moment, and in turn asked, ‘How much are you paid for doing this?’ A bit perplexed, the centurion said, ‘Two denarii a week. Why?’ The rabbi said, ‘I’ll pay you four denarii a week to stand outside my house every day and ask me those questions.’” — Unknown


John 1:38
John 21:15-17
Matthew 6:21

Rarely do we stop to ask about our purpose.  When we do, we may give an answer we may or may not believe ourselves. It might not even be true. How do we find the truth about our purpose? How do we look at our hearts honestly and seek out what is treasured there?

Asking questions makes for a good start. Answering them frankly and accepting the realities of our responses is another matter, though. Our objective here is to simply begin asking the uncomfortable questions.

Where do we find significance? In work? In the amount of time we spend serving others? What about our financial or athletic accomplishments? In looks or possessions? In our significant other? What about the way others speak of us? Or how they spoke of us at one point?  

What makes us feel affirmed and worthwhile? Receiving the gratitude of others? Being recognized in print?  Having others find us attractive or funny or intelligent or simply fun? Physical affection? Invitations to go out or come over or get involved?

What do we value most?  Family? Work? Church attendance? Honesty?  Morality? Friends? Having a good time? Being found acceptable by others?  Wealth? Security? Status? Power? Autonomy and independence? Feeling worthwhile?  Being a good person? Winning? If we had to list our priorities, how would that list read?  

What am I seeking? Jesus asked this question of John’s disciples. He wanted to know, or maybe wanted them to know, what mattered to them. What were they after? If we find what we are after, we might find a little more about what truly matters to us. And when we know this, we might also know a little more about why we’re seeking it in the first place.

Friedrich Nietzsche said, “A man can bear almost any what if he knows the why.”  Life poses a litany of questions that we must answer every day, every hour, and every moment. Central to every response we give is our own personal “why.” We need to each ask this question. And when we find it difficult to discern, let us turn to these others that will tell us what we love and cherish and believe in and live and die for. Let us keep asking them.

What occupies most of your thoughts?
To what are you giving your time?
How do you think God feels about your answers to the first two questions?


© Revolworks 2019