I am a goal-oriented human being.
I set goals constantly. Do I always meet them? Absolutely not. But that does not keep me from setting them.
I’m not talking New Years resolutions here. I have a friend who is huge on New Years resolutions. She called me at the beginning of the year and asked what my resolutions were. “I don’t have any,” I replied. She was dumbfounded. I continued, “I set three new goals last week and I’m still working on those. Why would I give myself a whole set of resolutions for an entire year when I’m still working on my goals from last week? When I meet those goals (or don’t), I’ll set new ones.” (Nothing against New Years resolutions, I just know me, and I know that if I don’t have immediate goals in front of me then I won’t get a thing accomplished.)
Being a goal-oriented human being, I set some for this summer:
-Read one book per week (still working on this one…I have been reading, but not one per week quite yet)
-Go another twelve weeks on my exercise program (just finished my first twelve weeks (ACCOMPLISHED GOAL FROM MY LAST SET OF GOALS (**go me!!!**)))
-Blog once a week (welllll this is the fifth week of the summer and the first blog I’ve actually written so you can see how well that one is going…hey! I’m trying over here!)
Because I am goal-oriented, I automatically expect the people around me to be as well, so it’s no surprise that when I had a sleepover with a friend a couple weeks ago I rolled over in my three a.m. delirium and asked “So what are your goals for the summer?”
And here is where we get to the point of this whole thing! Stick with me!
She thought for a second about the question (I could tell she was about to make up her goal right there on the spot) and then the light bulb came on and she replied, “My goal is to really focus on finding out who I am.”
A noble goal. A huge one to take on at twenty-one years old. Heck, there are ninety-one year olds who don’t know who they truly are (but not for the reasons you might think. We’re getting to that.)
Everyone in our culture wants to find themselves. Students take a year off school to “find themselves.” Middle-aged adults pick up new hobbies to “find themselves.” People travel. People take up yoga. People start cooking. People make new friends. People try out different religions. People go back to school. People start new careers. All in the name of “finding themselves” or “finding out who they are.”
Do not get me wrong. There is nothing in the world wrong with wanting to find out who you are. You are an amazing human being. You have a purpose. There is a reason you are on this planet…BUT, if you are trying to find yourself in anything other than Jesus, you will never find who you truly are.
You want to find out who you are? Look for Jesus. The Bible told us at the very beginning who you are:
So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. –Genesis 1:27
In our original form, we were created in the image of God. At our very cores, who we really are is a reflection of who He is! Let’s continue.
Wanting to find something implies that what you are looking for is lost or hidden. You want to find yourself? The Bible tells you exactly where you are:
For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. -Colossians 3:3
Even the bible tells us that our lives are “hidden,” but it tells us exactly where they are hidden. WITH JESUS. We seek Jesus, we find ourselves.
Friends, God wants us to find ourselves, but first and foremost he wants us to find Jesus. That’s why he hid our lives with Jesus in the first place!
The enemy wants to distort the things that God has for us. The enemy knows that when we find our God-given purpose in life that he stands no chance. It’s the enemy who tells us that we can “find ourselves” in a new hobby, in visiting a new place, in marrying a new spouse, in having another kid, in changing our major, in fill-in-the-blank-with-anything-that-seems-edifying-but-distracts-us-from-Jesus.
So many people will make it to the end of their lives having never found themselves, not because they didn’t seek whom they were, but because they never sought Jesus.
My pastor said it best a few weeks ago. “You will never fully know yourself until you know God.”
I’m setting a new goal, friends. I am going to find myself…only in Jesus.