Thursday, April 30

A Purposeful Youth (Part 1)


TEXT: Daniel 1:8a

Introduction
"But Daniel purposed on his heart that he would not defile (i.e. tarnish/ruin) himself..." Do you think like Daniel? It should be noteworthy that we are not an accident. Even before the universe was created, God had us in mind, and He planned us for His purposes. His purpose for creating us will extend far beyond the few years we will spend on earth, so we are made to last forever.

Self-help and motivational books often suggest that we try to discover the meaning and purpose of our life by looking within ourselves, but Rick Warren, the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, one of America’s largest and best-known churches, said "that is the wrong place to start". Wish I strongly believe, we must BEGIN WITH GOD, our Creator, and His reasons for creating us. We were made by God and for God, and until we understand that, life will never make sense. That is why the Bible says in Ecclesiastes 12:1 that "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them".

purposeful-youth-p1

Definition of Terms
Before I go further, let me define the key words in this topic titled “A Purposeful Youth” - PURPOSEFUL and YOUTH. "Purposeful" (adjective) means to be determined to achieve an aim/intention/idea (i.e. what DRIVE you as a purposeful youth) or intended to achieve something useful in future. While "Youth" (noun) means, the time in someone’s life when he/she is still young or the quality of being young/of looking young. Hence, youth basically means "young people".

William Damon, a distinguished psychologist and the director of the Stanford Center on Adolescence, defines "purpose as a stable and generalized intention to accomplish something that is at the same time meaningful to the self and consequential for the world beyond the self.

Categories of Youth or Young People
There are four (4) main categories of young people: the disengaged, the dreamers, the dabblers, and the purposeful.

1]
Disengaged Youth are those who are showing no signs of anything remotely purposeful.

2]
Dreamers are those who have aspirations but have taken no steps to realize them.

3]
Dabblers are those who have actively tried out a number of potentially purposeful pursuits, but without a clear sense of why they are doing so or whether they will sustain these interests into the future.

4]
Purposeful Youth are those who have stable and generalized intention to accomplish something that is at the same time meaningful to the self and consequential for the world beyond the self.

As a zealous purposeful youth, you ought to have understood why you are alive and God’s amazing plan for you – both here on earth and forever in eternity.

To Live a Purposeful Life You Must Ask Yourself Questions
A life living without a QUESTION (or questions) will never have an ANSWER (or answers). That is, once you fail to ask yourself the life’s most important question - "WHAT ON EARTH AM I HERE FOR?" There will never be a reasonable answer (i.e. positive result) to such life. And a youth living without result(s) has a purposeless life.

What Next To Do after You Have Asked Yourself Questions
After you have asked yourself question(s), these are what next to do:
1] Write the VISION plainly,
2] PLAN purposefully,
3] PREPARE prayerfully,
4] PROCEED positively,
5] PURSUE persistently and
6] ACT immediately.

Once you can do all what stated above, a fulfilling/purposeful life awaits YOU. Meanwhile, it is noted that "a fulfilling or purposeful life belongs mostly to those with strong VISION and MISSION".


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