What is the meaning of your life? What is your purpose?
A nonbeliever might say that the meaning of life includes some or all of the following: happiness, success, riches, living peaceably with others, loving one’s family, working hard and making a good living, making a difference in the world, helping those who are less fortunate, and leaving the world a better place than when he or she entered it. A believer would say much of the same things except that he or she would make the supreme meaning and highest priority of life a relationship with God. This loving and obedient relationship with God supersedes and governs everything else.
Believers believe that God created the world for man’s enjoyment and pleasure (Genesis chapters 1 and 2; I Timothy 4:3-5). They view this life as a precious opportunity to obey what Jesus called the two greatest commands in the law: love God and love others (Matthew 22:37-40). When God spoke to ancient Israel, he first gave a divine indicative telling who he was and what he had done for them: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.” Then God immediately added the divine imperative: “You shall have no other gods before [or, besides, ESV margin] me” (Exodus 20:2-3). This means that God, because of who he is and what’s he’s done, demands the highest allegiance and commitment of our lives.
Believers view themselves as sinners forgiven by the love and grace of God in the sacrifice of Jesus on their behalf (Acts 2:22-38). Their whole purpose in life is to live for him who died for them and rose again to be Lord of their lives. They have been “buried with him in baptism and raised to walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:1-11). As a “new creation in Christ,” pleasing and serving Christ is their total life (2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 3:1-4). The Apostle Paul phrased it, “Christ means life to me” (Philippians 1:20-21). His entire goal in life was to “know Christ and the power of his resurrection” (3:10). He wrote that believers are daily “being transformed more and more into the image of Christ” (2 Corinthians 3:18). Believers are more committed to Christ than anything else in the world, including their family relationships and even their own lives (Matthew 10:37; Luke 14:26-27). Their purpose in life is not self-centered but Christ-centered.
This means that believers live as Jesus lived. They “serve one another in love” (Galatians 5:13). As God’s children, they imitate God and “walk in love” as they follow Christ (Ephesians 5:1-2). To them, that is the real meaning of life: loving God and loving others.
What are you living for? What means more to you than anything or anyone else in the world? What are you willing to die for? Is there anything or anyone more important to you than your life? If there is not, then the purpose of your life centers in you and your survival and personal happiness. The committed believer’s purpose is “to glorify God and enjoy him forever.”