Saturday, 14 April 2012

A Quest for the Meaning of Life

Life is one big quest, isn't it?  If we've been around long enough, we start searching for meaning in our existence.  Why am I here?  Do I matter?  What's the purpose of my life?  Do I fit into some big, master plan?

Like most people, I struggle with these questions.  But, as a Christian, I know my life has a purpose in God's plans.  The hard part is figuring out what that purpose is.

My life, so far, hasn't been a big success in the way the world would see it: I don't have a husband or children; I don't own a house; my car is over ten years old; and I've been made redundant twice.  But I know God has used my experiences to comfort other people and for that I am thankful.

What has He got planned for me?  Well, I love writing and I'd like to think God gave me that passion for a purpose.  It has long been a dream of mine to be a published author one day.  I wrote a couple of novels when I was a teen (one was a rip-off of the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon (I loved that show), and the
Best.  Cartoon Series.  Ever.
other was a YA fantasy that, when I read through it now, makes me glad nobody else had to endure it - some things are better off never seeing the light of day!).  Then I joined a drama group, and writing plays became my new focus (several of which have now been performed by the group).  As I've always loved watching films, a natural progression was to attempt a screenplay or two.  One particular one was a fantasy entitled 'Quest Seekers Unleashed'*, and I entered it in several screenplay competitions, but didn't get anywhere.

Over the years, the story (and the characters) refused to go away though, and my thoughts turned to developing it into a YA novel instead (thus returning to my first writing love).  After a few false starts, I eventually had a first draft on my hands. Many, many long months have been spent polishing the manuscript (with the help of several fabulous readers who pointed out ways to improve the story), and I'm now trying to find an agent for my literary baby.

There's a quote which goes, 'Sacrifice is the ecstasy of giving the best we have to the One we love the most'.  I'm not sure who the quote is by, but it resonates with me.  I've written my book to the best of my ability and given it to God.  If He wants to take it further, it's His call.

A few weeks ago, something I read in 'The Purpose Driven Life' by Rick Warren really spoke to me. It's at the end of Chapter/Day 30, 'Shaped for Serving God':-

We have all heard people say, "I took a job I hate in order to make a lot of money, so someday I can quit and do what I love to do."  That's a big mistake.  Don't waste your life in a job that doesn't express your heart.  Remember, the greatest things in life are not things.  Meaning is far more important than money.  The richest man in the world once said, "A simple life in the fear-of-God is better than a rich life with a ton of headaches."**

Don't settle for just achieving "the good life", because the good life is not good enough.  Ultimately it doesn't satisfy.  You can have a lot to live on and still have nothing to live for.  Aim instead for "the better life" - serving God in a way that expresses your heart.  Figure out what you love to do - what God gave you a heart to do - and then do it for his glory.***

I don't know what my future holds, but I've seen the way God has worked in my past, so I'm trusting Him for my future.  I am right where God wants me to be, and what more could I ask than that?

*Yup, that's where the Unleashed bit ties in to my previous blog entry.

** Proverbs 15 v 16 (Msg)

**Taken from 'The Purpose Driven Life' by Rick Warren.  Copyright (c) 2002 by Rick Warren.  Use by permission of Zondervan under the Fair Use policy.

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