Stories told in religious books always end up with a person dying after they have fulfilled their purpose; the reason they were here in the first place. Often when people retire, they die, it seems they have fulfilled the reason they were here and their body and psyche refuse to let them go on. Depression, disease and all manner of things creep in to ‘help’ them go.
Every day, all over the world people wake up and go about their business hopeful that this day is going to urge them closer to the fulfillment of their dreams. Some are energetic as they go about their business, others trudge along but even in the most difficult of times there is hope. That is what keeps humanity alive.
I once went to console a parent of a girl around twenty who had died in her sleep. This was not as a result of suicide but depression. She was not happy, felt hopeless, found no reason to live and had been like that for a while. Somewhere in the middle of the night, her body agreed, her heart gave way. This, therefore, means this type of death can happen not just to old people who have ‘fulfilled’ their purpose in life but even to young people. When there is no raison d'etre the person perishes.
What is your reason for being? What are your dreams, your plans? Why are you here? Sometimes we just can’t figure it out and occasionally when things are not going according to plan we wonder whether the universe agrees with us and we are honoring God in what we do. This is especially tricky if we have more than one talent or our dreams are many and diverse. There are a number of ways you can know you are on the right course and ensure you are not letting a dream die just because you are confused.
1. It is in line with your values; what you are doing or your dreams should not make you feel guilty every time you wake up or think of the reason you are doing what you do. If it is immoral, hurts innocent people or destroys lives you definitely can't be on the right track. Note some sometimes it can be confusing. For example, a soldier may be totally upset by what they do but in such a situation the right thing to do is retire at the earliest opportunity (not desert).
2. It is in line with your God given talent(s); sometimes we need to learn a new skill to help us fulfill our dreams. However, most of the time what is really your purpose at a time will require a minimal adjustment in skill. Learning just a little more can elevate you to the next level. For example, you could be a great musician but along with that, often you need good people skills to get opportunities to present your music in radio stations or concert or just knowing how to read music may take you to a whole different level.
3. Helpers come along; anyone fulfilling their purpose will in many cases have helpers coming along to elevate them to the place they need to be. This could be mentors or just people you work with. You could have recruited them or met them in a function but somehow they will make an appearance at the right time.
4. You are passionate about it; your dream or what you do should fill you with passion and a warm fuzzy feeling just thinking about it. It should put a smile on your face and twinkle in your eye or, in the most conservative, make your heart leap. If it doesn’t do any of this it is just another thing you are doing for the time being. It might be beneficial but it may not be the reason you are here
5. You are paid for it; while most people who are truly fulfilling their purpose are paid quite well for what they do, payment is not just in cash but also in reputation and in kind. People will pay exorbitantly for what you are offering but the bigger reward is the number of referrals you get as a result of your work and so you grow organically yet fast with little or no advertising.
6. It is your offering to the world; this could mean you are the only one in your environment who can do it really well or if you set your mind to it you actually could be the best in the world. This does not rule out delegation of aspects of what need to be done in achieving your dreams. Simply put if you died with your offering, you would go with it to the grave and the world lack of it. Examples could be a piece of music, an innovation a book or your relationship with someone e.g. family members. No one can do these for you. If you don't work this you go with that to your grave.
7. It is serving God and mankind; when you are on the right path you find that what you are doing is beyond personal self-interest. For example; you love to paint, but more so, you love that people can relate to the painting. Yo may love to sing, but more so you love to see the peaceful look in people’s eyes when they listen to your music. You love to make money, but more than that, you love that you can help people who are unable to fulfill their dreams by financing them.
These are just but a few things that will help you know you are on the right course. And when you achieve your dreams, if you don’t drop dead, do dream on. There is nothing like retirement in the Bible!