Have you ever found yourself wondering if your days are counting for anything? If your effort is worthwhile? If your aim is pointed in the right direction?
I remember asking myself these questions as a freshman in college. I felt directionless and adrift, but God was not far off. He captured my heart and attention through the influence of other freshmen who had a real and winsome walk with Jesus. Learning that God loves me as His child and had a purpose for my life were some of the first promises I was taught as a new believer.
What a joy it is to discover that God does not want us drifting aimlessly, questioning the influence He intends us to have in the world. He has designed each of us with a purpose. Creator God has a contribution in mind for each of us to make.
The phrase “To Know Christ and Make Him Known” has been the driving motivation for The Navigators since its founding in the 1930s. It summarizes so much about a life dedicated to following Jesus. Jesus’ appeal to some of His first disciples reflects a twofold calling: “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19, ESV). They were called to Him and to work with Him.
We are invited to experience Christ in His fullness and model the irresistibility of His companionship. When we begin to understand this, and the truth of our calling settles within us, we begin to ask a different set of questions: Who are the people I can impact with the grace of God? What part will I play in the kingdom of God?
No matter our career, our education, or our season of life, we are called to know Christ and to work with Him in a spiritual harvest. Great kingdom influence is not relegated to professional ministers or mythical spiritual heroes like Billy Graham or Andy Stanley. Every believer is called to be an instrument of influence, living out the kingdom life God intended.
It was my sophomore year of college that these truths really connected with me. After reading Disciples are Made, Not Born and The Master Plan of Evangelism, and hearing Dawson Trotman’s historic sermon “Born to Reproduce,” I began to understand my destiny as a disciplemaker. I clearly remember sitting at Newport Beach in Southern California, noticing the innumerable grains of sand when I read Genesis 22:17-18 (NIV):
I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.
I can still recall the gritty feeling of sand beneath my toes as I realized my life could be blessed by God in such a way that people, as many as the grains of sand on that beach, would be touched by God’s goodness through my life and those I influenced! As spiritual descendants of Abraham, the same promise that applied to Him applies to us (Galatians 3:29).
Our identity and purpose as those created by God is to be conduits of God’s grace to others. In knowing Christ, we are transformed into His likeness and equipped as ambassadors of His goodness to a broken world. We are destined for impact, disciples born to make disciples, children of God who grow the family of God. We are called and purposed. Let’s answer the call together.