Successful but discontent. Having a full life but feeling empty and trapped in my circumstances. That was me.
Deep inside something was missing … I sensed I was meant for more.
In my younger years, I read nearly every self-help book on the market. I set goals, listened to sermons and motivational speakers, attended Bible studies, went to conferences and retreats, volunteered for this and that, and cried out to God trying to fill myself up and be successful.
I’d had plenty of questions for God that began in my teenage years and lingered long beyond: What’s your will, Lord? What difference do I make? Why am I here? At my lowest point, I succumbed to bulimia, poor self-esteem, depression, and unmet, self-imposed expectations. While I tried to appear like I had it all together, admittedly I committed nearly every wrong imaginable—if not in reality then at least in my mind.
I was involved. Busy. I didn’t realize creating a full life wasn’t the same as living a fulfilling one. People were so impressed. I was not. I knew the void inside me.
Time passed … I had my share of trials as a young adult and mom. I married and got divorced. I remarried and immediately became a parent of a blended family. As a professional, I was successful. I was livin’ the dream! Or was I?
I had an above average life, an incredible husband and family, a lovely home in a quaint subdivision, and a church family where I belonged. Still … I was unhappy. I felt confused, restless, and often overwhelmed.
Don’t get me wrong. I had lots of laughs, fun, and many precious moments to tuck away in my heart. But no matter how I tried to shake the sense there was more to life than I was experiencing, I couldn’t.
Some attributed it to an off-and-on tango with ungratefulness. I thought I was grateful. But as much as I tried to make the dissatisfaction go away, the thoughts lingered. I knew there was something more for me but the answers to the why, what, and how questions eluded me.
Then, I learned about Christian Life Coaching from a purpose perspective and my life began to change. Once I realized the depth of my need and relationship with Christ and discovered my life purpose, I got serious about filling the void and following Jesus. Through trial and error and often great resistance, I learned this following would mean exchanging safe and comfortable for risk and fulfillment. And my will for his.
Suddenly and unexpectedly, I found myself leaving a career of over thirty years and a twenty-seven year business partnership having helped thousands of people gain professional success to be true to God’s calling on my life. You can’t and aren’t meant to live someone else’s dream.
Now, I’m thrilled to say that I can recognize and appreciate the obstacles in my life that want to keep me from knowing, believing, and living the dream and purpose God planted inside me long ago. And so my message to you is this; you can, too.
Ultimately, I’ve grown to appreciate obstacles. Why? Because of them I have learned the truth: It’s possible to break free from what holds us back from the fulfilling life God always intended for us to live … from the doubt, fear, overwhelm, discontent, and confusion … so we can know and bravely live God’s dream and purpose for our lives.
You, like me, have a dream written on your heart. God has a special purpose and plan for you to live this dream—to influence the lives of others as only you can on his behalf in your relationships, community, and in your profession—wherever He has you and desires to lead you.
Today, by God’s grace, I am able to live true to who I really am in my choices and my time. Of course, I’m still a work in progress as my story continues. But today, I can accept and live intentionally the moments of my days as I work and walk out my unique and important purpose, and the marvelous plan He has prepared for my life.
I can say in all confidence, I know why I’m here and it matters. And, I have answered his call on my life to help others do the same.
What does purpose mean to you?
About Gail Armatys: