We all want our God-given passion and purpose to fit in a bottle. Or grasp it in the palm of our hands. Perhaps have its words clearly written in our minds and articulated through our lips. We want it beautifully shining through our hearts humbly accepting the resulting applause. We want its message to be clear in our lives, in our blogs, in everything we do.
But fitting passion and purpose into the palm of our hands is like doing the same with God. We will crumble in the process. A better use of that open hand is extending it out to be filled with passion by God and used for His purpose.
Pursuing our God-given passion is a step-by-baby-step process. Below, I share my favorite resources for in-depth insight on discovering and pursuing your God-given passions. First, some basic steps for us beginners (from my post for Moriah Makes' Pursuing Her Passion series)...
our passion, our reason for being. Praying with passion, slowing to hear Him, being open to His pruning. Not hiding in mediocrity, but accepting the strength and beauty He gives to replace our weakness and ashes, that He may be glorified. | Is. 61:3
Read books both related and unrelated to your specific passion.As part of my monthly resolutions for 2012, I read a book (sometimes more) each month. The funny thing was that even books not directly related still had incredible inspiration and insight for my passions. Learn to write even if you're not a writer, take better photos even if you're not a photographer, schedule your blog posts even if you're not a blogger. Grow yourself as a person, and your passion and purpose will grow too. | Prov. 1:5
Take the next right step.Regina Brett wrote about this in God Never Blinks. You don't face the Everest of your goals all at once, you take it one step at a time. Do you need to learn something new, answer a few questions about yourself, pray about God's purpose for you, reach out to someone, try something new? Whatever your next right step is, take it. | Ecc. 9:10
Acknowledge your passion, accept your purpose.I have struggled calling myself a writer or a blogger or any of the things I have a passion for, even if I regularly do them. Then, I wonder what passion God has placed in me and what purpose He is leading me on. Hmmm. Maybe it's time to prayerfully acknowledge and accept. Acknowledge whatever you feel a passion for, and accept whatever purpose you see God leading on. He qualifies you to do it. His calling and permission is the only one that matters. | 2 Pet. 1:10
Live your purpose everyday.Pursuing whatever your passion may be has very little to do with waiting for permission to do so—it has everything to do with just doing it. Write, blog, pursue God. Whatever passion or purpose God is leading you on, do it everyday, remembering our sufficiency is from Him. | 2 Cor. 3:5
Know, and remember, why you do it.Admiring comments, positive feedback and a growing following feels good. It helps us know what we're doing is reaching someone; we know it's worth the time it takes to pursue this purpose. When we face crickets, or even critics, it takes everything within us to remember why we do this. And it's not for the praise or the acknowledgment, and certainly not for the pay. We pursue our passion because it is the purpose God placed in us—the one worthy of pursuing one step at a time.
Whatever you do, do it heartily,
as to the Lord and not to men. | Col. 3:23
Resources for Discovering Your Passion:Amy Lynn Andrews' starting a blog series: How to Find (or Refind) Your Passion
Barrett Ward's conference session: Finding Clear Purpose: Unless Your Life Goal is to be Boring
Joe Bunting of theWritePractice.com: How to Find a Unifying Theme for Your Blog
Jeff Goins of GoinsWriter.com: A Helpful Writing Exercise to Focus Your Blog Content
Pat Flynn of SmartPassiveIncome.com: When "All of the Good Ideas Are Already Taken"