Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell
Tattooed on my heart were these words, "Teresa, titles and positions are seasonal - but purpose is eternal."
Sabotaging truth, obliterating lies caused me to take notice of the mindset of this world system. From 'raving' accolades, 'proper' recognition, 'honorable' status, 'coveted' titles and 'desirable' positions of authority. Is there anything wrong with those things? No - yet when the focus of the accolades and titles become our identity, that is when the results of this focus becomes dangerous. What happens when the season ends of those things? Sadly, what we thought was 'identity' quickly disappears and leaves the door wide open for depression to come in with lies to entangle and ensnare us causing us to shipwreck when it could have been prevented all along.
But how can it be prevented?
Quite simply, being in awe of God by intentionally noticing things that were always there - those things we simply forgot to take notice. Look up at the sky, or intentionally hear the sounds of nature's proclamations and even think of the different people that surround us right now - no matter if they rub us the wrong way or encourage us - just take notice of how intricately beautiful they have been created. In this intentional, purposeful recognition - it's incredible - the seeking with insatiable hunger and thirst to know Who God is even more. There will never be an end to this unfolding awe of realizing Who God is...in this endless, vast desire for Him is when royal identity of who we truly are is revealed by the Spirit of God through His living Word - the Supernatural guidebook for living - revealing who He says we are which in turn shows us that nothing in this life is to be compartmentalized but to effortlessly flow.
Surprisingly, this life is not about being the greatest husband and wife, or this super "bread winner" or "super" mom. This life is not about being the best business person or entrepreneur, or even attaining to have a resume like King David or the Proverbs 31 woman. There is this simple realization that many have missed along the way - including myself - but now I see differently, through eyes that have been covered with the Divine Blood of Jesus - this realization to receive the identity of God's purpose over us - it's about being His son and daughter - and in this God's matchless grace abounds to flow through us in our marriage, parenting, leadership and friendships - we become the best because His best is flowing through us, empowering us.
The identity of His acceptance and royal adoption trumps rejection on every level; compelling us to soar above title and positions; no longer striving but now thriving in and with purpose.
For example, when God showed me my purpose statement as He utilized vessels to assist me in recognizing it, this supernaturally wrecked my life forever in the most incredible way. So here it is...my purpose statement.." My purpose is to encourage others and reveal the love of God." It's simple. This is my navigational tool in every aspect of my life. So when someone is rude - my first reaction is to go "Teresa violent on them with a few choice words" but then God's purpose for me awakens me by the Holy Spirit's power, reminding me yet again to "encourage others and reveal the love of God". When the spirit influencing a person to move me out of purpose - purpose reminds me of what I'm called to live no matter what.
When life seems to be unraveling or when victory is being experienced - my purpose remains. However when life attempts to get the best of me and I lay down my purpose and step over God's promises to take on my measly rights - I will almost immediately recognize so clearly what will happen instead - the results will be the opposite of my purpose and that will be, "discouraging others and NOT revealing the love of God".
Meanwhile, yet even in that, I am awakened by purpose that is surrounded with God's grace to empower me to make it right next time. No matter my title or position or lack thereof - no matter the challenges and change - purpose is unchanging - and the same is with God. God is true to Who He is - in the midst of changing seasons - in the midst of our tantrums and praises - He is not moved by our manipulating prayers or our "right on" moments - He is IMMOVABLE AND STEADFAST as He is motivated by Who He is and that is pure, holy, relentless, violent love.
I have come to this conclusion: the trying moments of life are the litmus tests to triumphantly and victoriously remind me of why I'm here on this earth. Purpose is not about me, it is just to flow through me. As purpose flows it is that constant encouragement of being mindful of those who need to be encouraged and it's about WHO they need to see, and that's God - and although it may not be about me, He sees me and loves me and with that holy love I've received, I must see it as an honor to share it with all those I come into contact with, and in that - guess what comes easy? His love, His forgiveness, His mercy and His loyalty. Our lives will begin to reveal how we are no longer just loyal to those who are loyal to us - but being loyal to ALL - deserved and especially on those who I would "say" aren't deserving.
Finally, our purpose statements cause us to not give up on God, life, ourselves or others as it will echo Matthew 22:37-40...love God with everything and in that "love exchange" from Him we can properly love ourselves and others which will result in never giving up! Go in His grace and watch in awe as your weakness is perfected by His strength. When we partner with Him, we are empowered by His grace to do more than we could have ever imagined without Him (Ephesians 3:20)!