Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. – Ecclesiastes 12:13
Why am I here? What is the meaning of life? Do I have a purpose? These are the existential questions that we all ask ourselves as we lie awake at night. And though many ask this question, it would be meaningless if it were not for the existence of God. Think about it. On atheism, What is my purpose? is a nonsensical question. If we are all accidental byproducts of nature which are doomed to perish, then we have no real purpose. Without God, there is no intention behind anything in the universe, and without intention there cannot be purpose. Our lives are just a happy coincidence and should not be viewed as anything more. The universe just is and there is no ought about it. Therefore, without God, there is no objective purpose.
On the other hand, one may suggest that we do not need God to have purpose, because we can create our own purpose for our lives. Though it is true that we can pretend that we have purpose or that we can act is if our lives have meaning; ultimately, it is all futile. For if we succeed or fail in our subjective goals, there is no consequence. Psalm 103:15-16 states, “As for man, his days are like grass; as a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.” If there is no God, then all of our hopes and efforts are for not. All of your achievements will be forgotten in a relatively short amount of time. The money that you may have accrued in your life will be useless once you are in the grave. The reality is that everyone and everything is destined for death and extinction from an atheistic point of view. And all we can do is craft an illusory meaning for our existence until that time comes.
However, this is not how any of us live. We all live as if we really do have a purpose and that our lives really do matter. We recognize that there must be more to this universe than simply being a cosmic coincidence. When we look at our spouses and children, we know that they really do have value and dignity. None of us truly accept that we are just a conscious collection of cells. I believe this reveals the spark of divinity that we all share being made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). Likewise, it would seem that our desires cannot be fully satisfied within this finite realm. I believe this is because God has put eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Because of God, we can know that we were created for something and that our life truly has meaning. In God, we have an objective purpose.
So what is our purpose? I believe that God has revealed our purpose throughout the pages of Scripture. Acts 17:26-28 states, “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ ” Thus, our purpose is to seek and find God. Not to simply come to an intellectual assent of His existence, but to enjoy and experience Him personally. God desires that each one of us would enter a love-relationship with Him where we would find meaning, purpose, and fulfillment. Psalm 37:4 states, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.” When we delight in God, our deepest desires are met. In Him, we find the source of joy, peace, and life. As Augustine notes, “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.” We were created by God and for God. Therefore, there is nothing within this universe that will satisfy our desire for ultimate meaning and purpose apart from God. God wants the absolute best for us and that is why He offers us Himself.
Have you been searching for purpose? Do you desire to be fulfilled? I pray that you would find your purpose in God today!