Meaning: The reason for which something exists or is made.
Synonyms: Goal. Target. What-for. Objective. Function. Plan.
Ojo gingerly unwrapped his 14th year birthday present… This was a surprise from his dad who had just returned from a Trade fair that held in Japan. As the flowery sheet gave way to a white box, everyone in the sitting room held their breath. Ojo quickly opened it.
‘Wow! A ball pen’ exclaimed eight-year old Bisi.
‘Not a ballpoint pen, silly. This is a lead-refill mechanical pencil. It is used for technical drawing’
‘Come on son, that’s your kid sister. Moreover, this looks like the pocket-perfume my colleague at work bought recently.’ His mum gently chided.
‘Why don’t we all check the manual in the box?’ Dad was obviously enjoying the suspense.
They all gathered around the small booklet and went through the pictures and instructions for the gadget. It was after all, a new-tech whiteboard pen, with a stop-timer by the side and a flashlight at its tail end. Ojo was overwhelmed with joy. He hugged his father warmly.
‘Dad! It’s a 3-in-one. All my friends at school will be excited.’
‘Well, I hope that this will improve your interests in the sciences and mathematics.’
‘Dad!’ Ojo pouted and the others laughed.
When the purpose of a thing is not defined, abuse is inevitable. In other words, until a person or a thing is put to their designed purpose, their efficiency will very often be downplayed. They can never live out their full potential.
Habakkuk 2:2 reads, ‘…Write the vision and make it plain upon tablets, that he may run who reads it.’
[You may want to memorize this bible verse.]
Three things that purpose does for a person who understands it:
- Purpose directs your life: Purpose gives FOCUS, direction… This can be closely related with the behavior of light rays. Focused beams of light have direction, they travel in straight lines, penetrating through transparent objects and diverting around opaque ones to reach their goal. Purpose marks out one’s path in life and emphasizes one’s area of influence. If I am a student of Applied Arts, purpose will teach me that I have no business attending several lecture session for Chemistry. If I have a period of few weeks to learn to play the piano, then in that time, I might as well concentrate on it rather than playing a violin during practice.
- Purpose energizes your life: ‘…that he who reads it may RUN with it.’ It gives one’s life energy, momentum, force and drive. Focused light has higher intensity. Take for instance, a student who gains admission to study Business Administration in the higher institution for four years. She sets a target to graduate with a distinctive grade point. This will make her to refuse to be complacent, lazy or to fold her hands. She will become driven, attending classes punctually, burning the midnight oil and interacting with other like-minds.
- Purpose simplifies your life: If I have run to a finishing line, there are a lot of paths that I could take to reach it. But purpose will make me to run straight to the line within the shortest possible time, like light which travels in straight lines… Remember that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. A purposeful scholar avoids distractions, unprofitable activities and excessive leisure. Purpose saves time, channels one’s energies and increases one’s resources and quality.
Why are you living? Why have you embarked on your newest venture? Why did you take up that course of study? Why on earth were you endowed with those your natural talents and skills? Why?
The best way to know the purpose of a thing is to ask its maker, its designer. If you want to know the purpose of any aspect of your life, the most accurate answer can be gotten from God. If you ask Him, He will show you. He already promised, ‘Call to me and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things which you do not know.’ (Jer. 33:3)
No one else can tell your purpose more accurately; not your parents, best friend or a mentor. As intelligent and well – meaning as they may be, they will only explain your life in the light of their own understanding. Why live below your maximum potential when you can soar like the eagle and reach inconceivable heights, simply by knowing why you are…? Trust me, if you find out from God and know your purpose, you will run.