The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well. —Ralph Waldo Emerson
Have you ever wondered what Jesus wants to do with you?
I became a believer as a young boy, and I was certain He’d invite me on a grand adventure. What was it going to be? I kept my ears open and my heart ready for anything.
My childhood church hosted a missionary doctor who’d spent 30 years on an island in the middle of Lake Chad. This island was home to lepers as they lived out their last days. I listened to the doctor speak and wondered, Are You going to send me to Lake Chad, Lord?
Later in my youth, I heard my dad preach from 1 Corinthians 7; he taught the passage where Paul said it was better to be single. I panicked. Is that what You have for me, Lord—a life of celibacy?
I was a teenager when my mom handed me a book about David Wilkerson, a street preacher who converted Nicky Cruz—one of the roughest gang leaders in NYC during the 1950s. David decided to find Nicky and tell him about Jesus. So he walked right into gang territory and said to him, “Nicky Cruz, Jesus loves you.” Nicky and his friends spit on David and slapped him around, but David was undeterred. As I read about Nicky and his peers coming to know Christ, I wondered, Is that what You have for me, God? Will I become a street preacher?
These were all sensational ideas, but what they really came down to was the question, “Lord, what do You want to do with me?”
Jesus does have something He wants to do with each of us. And while it might not be as dramatic as any of the above, it will present moments of difficulty. For some of you, this thing that Jesus wants to do with you will be harder than living on an island of lepers, living a life of celibacy, or walking into gang territory.
So the question is: What does Jesus want to do with us?
Lord, perhaps this feels like a question that hasn’t been fully answered. Maybe I revisit it at different seasons of my life. What do You have for me to discover? Amen.
Learn more from Pete’s teaching on Luke, What Will Jesus Do?