I wrote last week on navigating the weeks after losing Kane especially as it pertains to feeling purposeless. I’m not naïve enough to think that with a few prayers and a little determination I can cure that problem and move on to the next. In fact, I have actually come to the opposite determination – that I cannot actually “fix” anything. (And that’s a blog for another day – having to come to grips with the fact that I have neither the power or the ability to fix things – either for me or anyone I love.)
But, instead of getting frustrated or throwing up my hands, what I am determined to do is to not live out the rest of my days sulking or constantly fighting this overwhelming lack of drive and motivation.
William Ernest Henley wrote Invictus in the late 19th century. It is a relatively short poem, written about determination and grinding through adversity. (The story goes that Henley was fighting tuberculosis at the time.) The last two lines have been used as battle cries for everyone from Dan Quayle to Nelson Mandela to probably anyone trying to grit their teeth through anything. The last two lines read:
“I am the master of my fate,
I am the Captain of my soul.”
Words of reassurance, of hope, and of determination, no doubt. Saying them out loud makes you feel strong and in charge of whatever storm you are facing.
But, it’s just not true. Or, at least we sure hope not.
God has worked it out to remind me this week of an important detail. Something we quickly forget, especially in the American culture that we were brought up in. And, hang on, because this is going to fly in the face of everything that is instilled in us from the time we are big enough to listen. I’ll show you two different places (there may be more) that I’ve been led to just this week.
“I call to God most High, to God who fulfills His purpose for me.” – Psalm 57:2
“For it is God who is working in you, enabling you both to desire and to work out His good purpose.” – Philippians 2:13
In truth, we are not the masters of our fate and have not been created for such. Not if we truly are seeking to be servants of the One True King. Not only does He have a purpose for me, He is working it out, fulfilling it, and giving me the desire to do it. Not what Greg desires, but what He has purposed.
I want to pray with authenticity the response of Isaiah, “Here am I. Send me.” (Isaiah 6:8). Because the only way to regain my desire and sense of purpose are through allowing God to provide them for me.
I hope that wherever you are in life as well – it is being lived carrying out His purpose.
Soli Deo Gloria!