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Daily Inspiration for the Purpose Driven Life
ZONDERVANCopyright © 2013 Zondervan
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WHAT ON EARTH AM I HERE FOR?
A life devoted to things is a dead life, a stump; a God-shaped life is a flourishing tree. PROVERBS 11:28 (MSG)
Blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they go right on producing delicious fruit. JEREMIAH 17:7 - 8 (NLT)
It All Starts with God
For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. COLOSSIANS 1:16 (MSG)
It is God who directs the lives of his creatures; everyone's life is in his power. JOB 12:10 (TEV)
Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. ROMANS 8:6 (MSG)
Jesus said, "Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self." MATTHEW 16:25 (MSG)
God's wisdom is something mysterious that goes deep into the interior of his purposes. You don't find it lying around on the surface. It's not the latest message, but more like the oldest—what God determined as the way to bring out his best in us, long before we ever arrived on the scene. 1 CORINTHIANS 2:7 (MSG)
It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone. EPHESIANS 1:11 (MSG)
You Are Not an Accident
I am your Creator. You were in my care even before you were born. ISAIAH 44:2 (CEV)
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me. PSALM 138:8 (NRSV)
You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. PSALM 139:15 (MSG)
You saw me before I was born and scheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your Book! PSALM 139:16 (LB)
From one man he made all nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. ACTS 17:26 (NIV)
Long before he laid down earth's foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. EPHESIANS 1:4 (MSG)
God decided to give us life through the word of truth so we might be the most important of all the things he made. JAMES 1:18 (NCV)
God formed the earth and made it. He set it up. He did not create it to be empty but formed it to be inhabited. ISAIAH 45:18 (GWT)
God is love. 1 JOHN 4:8 (NIV)
"I have carried you since you were born; I have taken care of you from your birth. Even when you are old, I will be the same. Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you. I made you and will take care of you," says the Lord. ISAIAH 46:3 - 4 (NCV)
The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us. ROMANS 12:3 (MSG)
What Drives Your Life?
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." JOHN 14:6 (NIV)
Everyone's life is driven by something; many are driven by things like guilt, resentment, anger, fear, materialism, and the need for approval.
To worry yourself to death with resentment would be a foolish, senseless thing to do. JOB 5:2 (TEV)
I observed that the basic motive for success is the driving force of envy and jealousy! ECCLESIASTES 4:4 (LB)
A pretentious, showy life is an empty life; a plain and simple life is a full life. PROVERBS 13:7 (MSG)
There are other forces that can drive your life but all lead to the same dead end: unused potential, unnecessary stress, and an unfulfilled life.
I have labored in vain; I have spent my strength for nothing at all. ISAIAH 49:4 (NIV)
My life drags by—day after hopeless day. JOB 7:6 (LB)
I give up; I am tired of living. Leave me alone. My life makes no sense. JOB 7:16 (TEV)
You will be a restless wanderer on the earth. GENESIS 4:12 (NIV)
The Bible has a remedy.
Don't live carelessly, unthinkingly. Make sure you understand what the Master wants. EPHESIANS 5:17 (MSG)
Reflect on what I am saying [about serving the Lord], for the Lord will give you insight into all this. 2 TIMOTHY 2:7 (NIV)
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." JOHN 14:6 (NIV)
The Benefits of Purpose-Driven Living
Knowing your purpose gives your life meaning, simplicity, focus, and motivation. It also prepares you for eternity.
What happiness for those whose guilt has been forgiven! What joys when sins are covered over! What relief for those who have confessed their sins and God has cleared their record. PSALM 32:1 (LB)
Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love. 1 JOHN 4:18 (MSG)
"I know what I am planning for you," says the Lord. "I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future." JEREMIAH 29:11 (NCV)
Glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of— infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. EPHESIANS 3:20 (LB)
You, Lord, give perfect peace to those who keep their purpose firm and put their trust in you. ISAIAH 26:3 (TEV)
I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven. PHILIPPIANS 3:13 - 14 (NLT)
Let's keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us. If any of you have something else in mind, something less than total commitment, God will clear your blurred vision —you'll see it yet! PHILIPPIANS 3:15 (MSG)
Made to Last Forever
God has planted eternity in the human heart. ECCLESIASTES 3:11 (NLT)
God designed you, in his image, to live for eternity.
When this tent we live in—our body here on earth —is torn down, God will have a house in heaven for us to live in, a home he himself has made, which will last forever. 2 CORINTHIANS 5:1 (TEV)
When you fully comprehend that there is more to life than just here and now, you will begin to live differently. You will start living in the light of eternity.
I was circumcised when I was eight days old, having been born into a pure-blooded Jewish family that is a branch of the tribe of Benjamin. So I am a real Jew if there ever was one! What's more, I was a member of the Pharisees, who demand the strictest obedience to the Jewish law. And zealous? Yes, in fact, I harshly persecuted the church. And I obeyed the Jewish law so carefully that I was never accused of any fault. I once thought all these things were so very important, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. PHILIPPIANS 3:5 - 8 (NLT)
This world is not our home; we are looking forward to our everlasting home in heaven. HEBREWS 13:14 (LB)
This world is fading away, along with everything it craves. But if you do the will of God, you will live forever. 1 JOHN 2:17 (NLT)
God's plans endure forever; his purposes last eternally. PSALM 33:11 (TEV)
Every moment we spend in these earthly bodies is time spent away from our eternal home in heaven with Jesus. 2 CORINTHIANS 5:6 (LB)
What is it going to be like in eternity with God? Frankly, the capacity of our brains cannot handle the wonder and greatness of heaven.
No mere man has ever seen, heard or even imagined what wonderful things God has ready for those who love the Lord. 1 CORINTHIANS 2:9 (LB)
Jesus will say, "Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world." MATTHEW 25:34 (NIV)
Seeing Life from God's View
Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God. ROMANS 12:2 (TEV)
What is your life? JAMES 4:14 (NIV)
The Bible offers three metaphors that teach us God's view of life:
1. Life on earth is a test. The good news is that God wants you to pass the tests of life.
God keeps his promise, and he will not allow you to be tested beyond your power to remain firm; at the time you are put to the test, he will give you the strength to endure it, and so provide you with a way out. 1 CORINTHIANS 10:13 (TEV)
Blessed are those who endure when they are tested. When they pass the test, they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. JAMES 1:12 (GWT)
God withdrew from Hezekiah in order to test him and to see what was really in his heart. 2 CHRONICLES 32:31 (NLT)
2. Life on earth is a trust. We never really own anything during our brief stay on earth. God just loans the earth to us while we're here.
What do you have that God hasn't given you? And if all you have is from God, why boast as though you have accomplished something on your own? 1 CORINTHIANS 4:7 (NLT)
The world and all that is in it belong to the LORD; the earth and all who live on it are his. PSALM 24:1 (TEV)
God blessed [Adam and Eve], and said, "Have many children, so that your descendants will live all over the earth and bring it under control. I am putting you in charge." GENESIS 1:28 (TEV)
Those who are trusted with something valuable must show they are worthy of that trust. 1 CORINTHIANS 4:2 (NCV)
If you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? LUKE 16:11 (NLT)
Jesus said, "From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." LUKE 12:48 (NIV)
Unless you are faithful in small matters, you won't be faithful in large ones. LUKE 16:10 (NLT)
If you treat everything as a trust, God promises three rewards in eternity: affirmation, promotion, and celebration.
Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness. MATTHEW 25:21 (NIV)
Life Is a Temporary Assignment
Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered, and that my life is fleeing away. PSALM 39:4 (NLT)
3. The last metaphor of life is that it is a temporary assignment.
For we were born but yesterday and know so little, and our days on earth are as transient as a shadow. JOB 8:9 (NLT)
I am here on earth for just a little while. PSALM 119:19 (TEV)
I am but a foreigner here on earth. PSALM 119:19 (NLT)
If you call God your Father, live your time as temporary residents on earth. 1 PETER 1:17 (GWT)
There are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Chris.... All they think about is this life here on earth. But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. PHILIPPIANS 3:18 - 20 (NLT)
Lord, help me to realize how brief my time on earth will be. Help me to know that I am here for but a moment more. PSALM 39:4 (LB)
Friends, this world is not your home, so don't make yourselves cozy in it. Don't indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. 1 PETER 2:11 (MSG)
The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can't see now will last forever. 2 CORINTHIANS 4:18 (MSG)
Realizing that life on earth is just a temporary assignment should radically alter your values.
Those in frequent contact with the things of the world should make good use of them without becoming attached to them, for this world and all it contains will pass away. 1 CORINTHIANS 7:31 (NLT)
We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 CORINTHIANS 4:18 (NIV)
You're cheating on God. If all you want is your own way, flirting with the world every chance you get, you end up enemies of God and his way. JAMES 4:4 (MSG)
In God's eyes, the greatest heroes of the faith are not those who achieve prosperity, success, and power in this life, but those who treat this life as a temporary assignment and serve faithfully, expecting their promised reward in eternity.
All these [heroes of the faith] died in faith. They did not get the things that God promised his people. But they saw them coming far in the future and were glad. They said they were like visitors and strangers on earth.... They were waiting for a better country—a heavenly country. So God is not ashamed to be called their God, because he has prepared a city for them. HEBREWS 11:13, 16 (NCV)
We are Christ's ambassadors. 2 CORINTHIANS 5:20 (NLT)
Excerpted from Daily Inspiration for the Purpose Driven Life by Zondervan. Copyright © 2013 Zondervan. Excerpted by permission of ZONDERVAN.
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