To Find Your Life Purpose, Listen. But to Whom?
May 27, 2010
One of the most rewarding things I’m privileged to experience is the wonderful feedback I receive from those who take the time to let me know that the Sacred Path, Joyful Journey process is making a positive difference in their lives. However, hardly a day goes by, and today is no exception, when someone doesn’t suggest that I change the Sacred Path, Joyful Journey message in some way or in some other way alter my response to my own Calling as I seek to live on purpose. These suggestions almost always come from very well-intentioned people who genuinely care about me. And I truly appreciate hearing these ideas, and I’m grateful for people who care enough about me to give me their sincere thoughts and advice. It would be foolish of me to ignore their perspectives. But I must sound a cautionary note about such suggestions, or maybe I should say, I want to sound an alarm bell.
While others’ advice can be incredibly valuable, it can also very quickly derail your pursuit of your Calling (your life’s purpose/mission). Here’s how. Your Calling, or your traveling directions for your life journey, is a message designed for you and you alone. This doesn’t mean that your Calling is solely for your benefit. If you follow your Calling’s traveling directions, you will almost certainly live out your Calling in community, using your gifts and talents in a meaningful way to improve the lives of others. But the traveling directions are given specifically to you, not to the community. Others may get it or they may not. Indeed, people within your community will play an important role in validating that you’re on the right path. But here’s the deal. Many of the people you interact with will not have an understanding or appreciation for the spiritual journey you will be on as you’re seeking your Calling. These people’s lack of understanding of the particulars of what your Calling is asking you to do is irrelevant to its value, to you, and to the rest of the world.
It’s far too easy to become distracted by others’ advice when trying to listen to your Callings’ true message. The allure of achievement, concern for how other people will view you, or your own self-doubts can quickly become a dense fog that hides the road that is the Sacred Path. Those giving you advice may suggest that you wait to pursue your Call, or do it now, or spin it so it will sell, or adjust your journey in a thousand different ways. Their advice may sound good, and it may indeed have real value. But you must be highly discerning before you change your direction. Here’s the litmus test. If following others’ suggestions would shift your focus from what you know in your heart (soul/spirit) to be your Calling’s instructions, respectfully decline. Don’t do it.
When you begin traveling on your Sacred Path, you cannot know in advance how your journey will turn out. You cannot predict with any certainty what experiences, blessings, and lessons you will encounter. But you can know for sure that if you stay true to your Calling’s leading, blessings will indeed occur and the world will, in some way, be a better place because of you. Here’s the preverbal bottom line. Listen to the advice from people who care about you, but remember to listen even more intently to the One who Calls, the One who has a purpose for your talents and gifts.