The alarm goes off. My arm quickly moves to shut off the annoying noise. I sigh (or groan). Why does 5:00 come so early? My mind turns to what is next (if I stay awake). Depending on which day it is, my schedule is different. Some days, I head downtown to my job in the city. Some days, I go into church for the day. If it happens to be Saturday, this process would usually not even taking place because there would be no alarm clock set. Lately, though, Saturdays have been filled with recording at the studio.
So, as I eventually turn off the alarm, my mind starts to run through what the day will hold. Depending on the day of the week, there are different levels of anticipation or lack thereof. So, I swing my stiff and crackling body out of bed and start moving toward the first task. I usually wake up pretty groggy, not overwhelmed with eagerness and expectation. As my day progresses, I find that I can frequently navigate the day without a much sense intentionality or purpose. That is not to say that I don’t strive to do my tasks well or set a good example. However, I can just go methodically through the day, checking things off my list and dealing with things as they come. My focus can easily become getting through the day and not on the purpose for the day that I have been given. Can you relate at all?
Did you know that you and I were made with a purpose? We are not just random results of chance or human reproduction. We were created with purpose and each day we are given comes with a purpose. The Westminster Shorter Catechism summarizes this purpose in the response to the question, “What is the chief end of man?” The answer: “to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” This answer is based on continuous references throughout Scripture. I have included just a few here. “Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for ?you created all things, and ?by your will they existed and were created.” (Rev. 4:11). “For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.” (Rom. 11:36). “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Ps. 16:11).
We have been created for the glory of God and in His presence is fullness of joy – not just a little joy, but fullness, richness, and completeness of joy. This means that each day I open my eyes, I have a purpose – to glorify God and to enjoy God. Whatever else is on my list for the day is secondary to this. Whatever else is on my agenda should flow through and out of this purpose. I have heard the statement before that someone “was so heavenly minded that they were no earthly good.” Personally, I think this statement is neither Biblical nor true. For when we become heavenly minded, with our heart and mind set on God and His work in our lives, it is only then that all of the rest of our lives can truly come into proper focus (Col. 3:1-4). Our lives and daily tasks become a life of worship (Rom. 12:1-2) and in the midst of this, we find joy in God.
This does not mean that life does not come with challenges, hardships, and sorrows. However, in the midst of these, we can continue to live a life of worship as we seek to bring glory to God and receive joy from Him. This is truly a gift and only possible by the hand of God, through life in Jesus Christ. As we focus our gaze on the wonder of Christ and yield to His work in our lives by the Holy Spirit, God will transform us day by day, As we sink our roots deep into Christ and the Word of God, our desires will become more like His and we will not be satisfied so often with cheap imitations offered by the world. We will hunger more for things that are eternal.
As it is, I find that I am often satisfied with less than what God has offered to me. C.S. Lewis put it this way. “Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased” (The Weight of Glory, 1942).
This will be a constant struggle, but the battle is worth it. Let’s not be so easily pleased. Let’s hold fast to our hope in Christ and continue to spur one another on to love and good works (Hebrews 10:23-25). May we pursue lives of worship, finding satisfaction in our God as we glorify Him and enjoy Him forever. It was for this that we were created.
Together for His glory…