A Culture of Paycheck to a Culture of PurposeNov 05, 2020
The Power Of Purpose.
The verdict is in …. we’ve transformed from a culture of “paycheck” to a culture of “purpose”. The people want purpose. In fact, many demand it, or else! This is a major workplace disruption.
As a boomer, I can only imagine having a conversation with my dad informing him that I was choosing purpose over paycheck. Perhaps it would go something like this…
ME: “Um, dad, (more mumbling) I’m thinking about leaving my job and looking for something with more meaning, something more agile and collaborative, you know …engaging … where my talents and strengths are maximized. Perhaps a bit more flexible … where I don’t have to go in every day. Work from home. Things just feel so heavy at my current job, same old thing, I’m not feeling the learning or personal development.”
And then after my dad stopped laughing, I’d probably get a lecture on how a job is where you go to get a paycheck … to support your family. That I’m not supposed to like my job. That purpose and meaning are for men who are soft.
At 23, I actually launched my first business so I could have all these things. I just didn’t tell anyone my reasoning. And for the last 36 years as a serial entrepreneur, I’ve built six purpose-driven companies. I get it! I didn’t want to waste my life not having a purpose.
Look, if we’re all going to spend 100,000 plus hours working in our careers, then we should do something that matters. Both at home AND at the workplace.
What’s amazing to me is that a whopping 70 percent of American workers actually loathe their jobs. That’s messed up! Right?
So if you’ve ever felt like you were meant to do something greater than what you are presently doing, you’re not alone. Your career should have meaning. Like a calling. Why not do something that matters! And when you’re not, it can be incredibly frustrating to have this desire, but not know how to fulfill it?
Deep inside every one of us is a God-planted purpose. Remember when we were young? Boy, how we could dream. Anything and everything was possible. We could become the President of the United States, a superhero, a mogul, a celebrity, or a professional sports star. There were no barriers and nothing was off limits; if we could dream it, we could do it!
Over the years I’ve run into four “types” of people who are searching for purpose who self-identify as:
- The Set-Back: Those who have been set back have risked much to experience success only to encounter great loss. In other words, things went suddenly wrong for you (hence the setback). Perhaps you have lost your business or job, your marriage has failed, or a loved one has died. Whatever happened, you have experienced a great crisis that has shaken you to the core. What now?
Many of us have chased our dreams only to face great disappointment. We might have tasted what we thought was success (lifestyle, marriage, businesses, careers, great health, relationships, and children) only to watch it all slip away. Perhaps life’s unfair circumstances or poor personal decisions just happened. Life can be full of setbacks and delays that feel like denials.
If this is you, then you have spent much time looking in your rearview mirror, asking “What happened?” We tend to look toward the past to attempt to get back to the “good ole’ days.” Oh, if I could only go back. The problem is this type of thinking keeps us from moving forward with our lives. Anyone who has risked pursuing their dreams has faced and felt disappointment, setbacks, and delays. Many wounded warriors have just given up and surrendered their dreams to the battlefield because the wounds are too deep and life hurts too much. When you talk to these people, you can see the ugly scars of hurt and disappointment.
- The Serial Loser: You have risked, yet you have never experienced success. You live life struggling without ever having experienced the win. You are sick and tired of being sick and tired. You’ve never met that special person or experienced that wonderful career. You’ve never had anything worthwhile to lose. Someplace between your dream and your destiny … YOU GOT STUCK! There is nothing to even look back at. Life hurts.
- The Realist: You have never risked. You played it safe. You never chased a dream. You never chased anything. You let everything getaway. That special person, the career, the business, or the idea you could have had, you allowed your circumstances to determine
your future. You were, after all, just being realistic. You just never had the courage to attempt anything great in your life. You played it safe. Your pain is different, the pain of not attempting to become the person you thought you might be.
- The Successful: You have taken calculated risks and managed life well. You have sacrificed much to achieve your goals. You are successful, and yet you feel empty. You had a great plan; it just wasn’t His plan, so you lack purpose.
If you are in the so-called “success” category, you probably have no idea that life is about to go horribly wrong. People are generally in one of three life stages: 1) in a crisis, 2) coming out of a crisis, or 3) heading straight into a crisis.
It’s easy to get so caught up in all of your success that you ignore that feeling of emptiness and lack of purpose. You might have tried to fill this emptiness with “stuff,” but God has a way of allowing hardship into our lives to draw us closer to Him. All too often “success” people feel they are self-made, and unfortunately often worship their creator — themselves! “Success” people who haven’t yet experienced a great loss lack a weathered grain, a beautiful patina polished by overcoming life’s challenges. Like a freshly crafted table, they need finishing and the finisher of their faith is about to step into the picture.
The truth is, WE ALL have an inner desire for a greater purpose in our lives. Something meaningful. Something that matters. God created winners, not losers. We can all win by successfully living God’s plan and purpose for our lives.
Despite your past or present season, God has created you and me on purpose … with a purpose. You may have allowed your perception of what’s possible to shrink, and as a result, many of your dreams have remained buried under a mountain of caution, doubt, and fear.
The big dream now seems too risky and unrealistic. How would you even begin? After all, your thoughts are of an earlier time, the foolishness of fantasy, perhaps the same type of fantasy as winning the lotto. You might hope or dream, but you don’t believe.
Ask Yourself This Question.
If you believe God actually exists, there’s also a good chance you believe God created every human being as part of His plan … WITH a specific plan and purpose for each one.
Most believers will agree that God has a plan and purpose for each one of us, yet when asked what their specific plan and purpose is, regrettably … they can’t tell you.
That’s because most people struggle to define what will make them happy — the American dream, the ideal career, a relationship, a certain house, a car, a specific level of income or lifestyle. We all want to know “What will make me happy, and how will I know when I get there?”
When life has not worked out the way we imagined, it’s natural to ask, “Why am I on the planet? Is this all there is? There must be more, right?”
So what if God actually has a plan and purpose for your life? Wouldn’t you want to know what it is?
Three Truths That Will Change Your Life
The truth is, God will begin to meet the desires of your heart as you pursue His plan and purpose.
Closely examine these three truths that will change your life forever:
Truth #1 — God has a master plan and purpose for your life.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) — “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Truth #2 — God will reveal His plan (for you) to you.
Psalm 16:11 (NIV) — You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
Truth #3 — No person or thing can stop His plan for you … Except You!
Psalm 33:11 (NIV) — But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of His heart through all generations.
Whether you are a believer, an unbeliever, churched, de-churched, or un-churched, God stands ready to prove to you that He exists, that He loves you, that He has a plan and purpose for your life, and that His plan will completely fulfill you. Furthermore, no person, event, or circumstance can stop you from fulfilling His plan, except you, SHOULD YOU CHOOSE not to identify it, pursue it, and fulfill it.
God does not promise us life on easy-street, however. Life with or without God will have many struggles. Trust me on this one. I’ve been around the block a few times and life hasn’t been easy. Growing up was hard. I was raised in a home with an alcoholic dad. Life was messy. A constant embarrassment. Dad came home drunk most nights. There was always tension until he got home because we knew he’d be driving home drunk. He was a big tough truck driver, and sometimes he drove the eighteen-wheeler home. So we worried. Then when he came barging through our front door, drunk as a skunk, first we were always relieved that he made it, and then the evening’s fireworks began. Life wasn’t easy. But we all have our stories, right?
If you knew that God, who created not only you but this entire world, was offering to help you, would you let Him? God desires a relationship with you that will become stronger through your struggles. So will you accept God’s purpose and master plan for your life?
My book HisPlan MyPlan was written to help someone like you, identify and fulfill God’s plan and purpose for your life.
Quit settling for stuck and start to choose God's best life for you. How? By Discovering God's plan and purpose for your life.