My Southern Legitimacy Statement is that my Grandpa on one side was born in Oklahoma before it was a state and my Grandma on the other side was born in Mexico. That’s pretty far South if you ask me! I’m just a wandering soul who enjoys sharing what I’ve learned and experienced in my 56 years as a human.
Finding and Fulfilling Our Purpose Right Where We Are
Whether you are involved in organized religion, following a spiritual path as I do, or anything in between, most of us have a desire to find our purpose.
In the popular book “The Alchemist,” Coelho refers to it as our own personal legend. It’s a metaphor about a young man who is in search of his personal legend, but the real story is in the events he encountered, the lives he changed, and the way he grew as he was in “search” of his purpose. It wasn’t as much about the reward at the end, nor in the finding of a great truth, but in what occurred on the journey.
While we may have had these feelings and desires to find our “legend” in our early years, we didn’t have the time we are afforded now as we grow out of some of the responsibilities of our youth. Now, as we slow down and can make use of our hard earned wisdom, the desire to make a difference calls to us a bit louder and with a bit more urgency.
It’s a quiet voice inside each of us asking why we are here. Asking what we were created to do. Wondering how will we make a difference in this world.
I’m not sure if it was Hollywood, mythology or our Sunday school Bible stories that fueled a desire for us to have purposes that are heroic. Goals to be a great teacher, famous singer or actor, or to climb the ranks as a political leader. Rich and famous somehow got tangled up with our desires to follow our path to meaning. What ever convinced us that popularity and status equate purpose and value?
Have you ever been brought to tears by a choir?
Or found yourself lost in the beauty of a piece of mosaic art?
How about the feeling of being swept away to another time by a captivating movie or play?
Would the music have had the same effect on us if it had been only one acapella singer?
Would the art have been as astonishing if all of the pieces were the same?
And what about a movie that consisted on one man’s role with no other characters for him to interact with?
Would we still feel the same?
There is beauty in creations that are woven from many parts. Together, those many unique pieces conjure up a masterpiece that one part alone could never have accomplished on their own. Each of us is an unique blend of yarn that will be woven through many lives, in unseen patterns, bringing value to others and rewarding us with blessings and lessons along the way.
Why do we so often shy away from the seemingly “small parts?”
Why do we put so little value in making a difference in the world that has been created around us?
We ask Spirit to show us our purpose here on this earth! But we only have eyes and ears for the great dreams or lofty manifestations we are intending for the future, while our opportunities for greatness are in the here and now.
Our purpose is to be. To be our authentic selves to the best of our ability at this time. Out of this finding and being our truest selves, there usually comes a desire to serve. To make a difference. To be an author of change for the better in this world. The problem is that we think that we are called to make a difference in the outside world when we haven’t even blessed our immediate, surrounding world with our gifts.
We focus on the future, which only exists in our minds. We dream of touching lives across the globe but rarely in our own backyard. Why is this? Why do we fear being a cog in the wheel?
Opportunities to live out our purpose are given to us each day. If we don’t value the chances we have to make a difference in our immediate circle how can we even wish to be given more influential opportunities down the road?
If we have children at home then our purpose is to be the best parent we can, understanding that our actions today will affect generations to come. How’s that for big?
If we work outside the home, how do we show up for our coworkers? Do we engage or avoid? Are we making a positive difference in the lives of those we spend most of our time with? Do they view us as problem makers or problem solvers? Team player or division creator? Are we a blessing or a burden? How can we live out our purpose, our personal legend, in our workplace?
The same goes for our partnerships, roommates, grown children, family, neighbors, grocery checkers, bartenders, dog walkers, homeless neighbor, or delivery driver. How we show up in each and every person’s life that crosses our paths is part of our purpose. Our purpose is to shine our own personal light onto whoever and whatever situation is brought to us by Source. Every encounter and every obstacle is a chance to show who we are and what we are truly made of.
Now, I’m not going to lie. I’ve been an example of how not to be, what not to do, and where y’all shouldn’t go. I’ve been a drunk. I’ve chosen toxic men. I’ve neglected my children. I have not felt that I was living my purpose for many chapters of my life. All of that was part of my growing and learning. Those times were an offering from the Universe to assist me on my path to wisdom. My story today is one of overcoming, rising up, and using my past to bless others with hope and support as they journey through their own personal lessons. Part of my purpose is to bless others by sharing my truth and my stories.
We can’t go from Kindergarten to Jr. High just because we want to do the “big things.” If we haven’t taken the time to learn the alphabet how can we expect to teach physics? We can honor our Creator by valuing the lessons that come to us, and by learning through them. Knowing that we will grow in our wisdom and ability to handle much more in time.
So, looking back, can we see where we’ve been living out our purpose and touching the lives that crossed paths with us? Can we now see how those painful chapters we have survived helped to form the unique story that we alone can share with others to touch lives and be a catalyst for change? Do we see how intricately our story has been woven and how many small parts came together to create the one of a kind masterpiece that we each are today?
Looking around, can we see the endless opportunities we have to bless those in our circles with our wisdom and light?
We are our Purpose! Our story is a Blessing! Our circle is our Mission Field!
Whether our gifts are teaching, listening, hugging, comforting, encouraging, supporting, giving, or leading the masses to healing, all are valid, valuable efforts and none of which should be considered small. An encompassing hug, on the right day, at the right time, can save a life. Small gesture? I think not! How about my friend who spent a week of his life to help me get sober? No big deal? That week of his life changed mine forever. In fact, if he hadn’t surrendered his time for my healing I wouldn’t be here today, writing these thoughts, and encouraging all of you, to share your time, touch those lives, and change this world, just by being you.
So we say we want to live a life of purpose. We want to be agents of change. Then let’s hug those grandbabies, reach out to our lonely neighbor, call a sick friend, send a meal to a family in need, or just share our stories with those around us in the hope of encouraging them along their own path to wisdom and growth.
At the end of our lives won’t it be a beautiful gift to be able to look back at the magical creation we wove together with the people, places and events that entered our lives. I know I will feel a sense of accomplishment in my heart knowing that I was part of other’s masterpieces too.