Do you find that life lacks authenticity? Ever experience trouble in relationships? Wish there were more than just going through the routine - only to repeat it again tomorrow?
These feelings make sense if we are living contrary to how we were created.
When God made Adam, he created him to have a relationship with Himself and to work in the garden, taking care of it and classifying the animals. Man had a perfect relationship with God. He had a purpose, a function. Yet, God looked at the situation and said, "It's still not good - man should not be alone." So God created woman.
From this first account in Genesis, it is clear that people were created with a purpose. We were made to relate to God, to relate to our fellow man, and to live out a "personal design".
In "the Fall", man disobeyed God. That disobedience resulted in a far-reaching and complete alienation. First, man hid from God and had to be physically separated from Him. Relationship with God was lost. Second, Adam and his wife hid from one another. They tried to clothe themselves, expressing the division and shame there. Finally, man was placed outside of the garden, away from his home and his work.
Today, all people are born disconnected from their purpose: they are separated from God, from other people, and from their God-given design. The fruit of this separation is evident everywhere. People seek to live for other goals: money, popularity, pleasure, comfort. Relationships are so easily damaged and can leave us feeling lonely. Even work can become a drudgery. We often find ourselves just trying to make it through each day. Simply put, things are not the way they were meant to be.
When Jesus is asked to sum up the Law, he makes it simple: "Love God with everything you've got, and love each other the way you love yourself." Essentially, "Live the way you were meant to live!" Yet we don't. This rebellion calls for judgment, and the Bible is clear that judgment is coming. God could not just overlook disobedience and sin.
Because God is a just God, He must punish sin. But our lives are filled with it. We knowingly do wrong things, and we purposely "hijack" ourselves from living out our purpose. Decisions are based on how they will benefit us, money is spent based on what we want to do - we are consumed with us.
So we find ourselves in a prison - a prison to ourselves. Our lives are unfulfilling, yet we cannot seem to live otherwise. Self is the problem, and there is no way that we can get ourselves out of this hopeless condition. In our own efforts, we can do nothing to reconnect with a holy God.
God loved the world so much that He was unwilling to allow this situation to continue. He stepped into history, took on flesh, and lived a life of purpose. Ultimately, Jesus was put to death, a path He willingly chose in order to rescue mankind. The judgment that He took on the cross paid the penalty for the sins of man. Three days after his death, he rose from the dead. His sacrifice offers freedom to those in the prison of "self". A new and different kind of life is available - the life of Christ.
John 3:16 says, "whoever believes in him will not perish, but will have everlasting life." If you put your confidence in Jesus and what he did on the cross for you, you'll not only avoid judgment, but you can have that new life.
Colossians 1:13 says of those who trust Jesus, "[God] has transferred us out of darkness and into the kingdom of His beloved Son." It's as though we were in a deep hole, in a muddy, dark well. But if we choose to trust in Christ as the sufficient payment for our sins, God reaches in, pulls us out, and brings us to the royal court where we can learn to live out our purpose to a greater extent each day.
Once you transfer your trust to Christ and His work, your relationship with God is immediately restored. You now have the opportunity to grow in Him. You have the ability to be different! As you develop in your relationship with Christ, relationships with others will become more meaningful. You will also discover that you were designed for a specific purpose. Life will become fulfilling as you worship God and bring glory to Him!
Romans 3:23 - for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
John 3:16 - For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:36 - Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him.
Ephesians 2:1-10 - As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the imcomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourseles, it is the gift of God--not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
John 1:12 - Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.