“I believe that God’s purpose for your life is in one statement and that is -- the greatest passion in life is to die empty -- I challenge you to die empty -- all your dreams - finished, all your paintings - painted, all your books - written, all your songs - written, all your businesses - opened, all your school - finished, all your magazines - published, all your music - recorded, all your masterpieces - produced…and die like Jesus; and say “It is finished.”
~ Dr. Miles Munroe – at Greenwood Christian Center, Tulsa, OK March 1, 2006 – Understanding Your Potential – John Chapter 8
You know, I think there's a place in all of us that responds to the "Where am I going, where do I fit, and why, oh why, can't I see the big picture?" question. Even knowing that I am loving my place in life right now, raising my kids, loving my husband, building a home, almost-full-time ministry, writing, working for a publisher...there's a part of me that asks "God, is there more I should be dreaming of, hoping for, pressing toward?" For me, my 'faith-stretches' often bring me back to this prayer:
"God I want what you can see, not what I can see. Forgive me for wanting to walk by sight and call it faith."
Something deep inside, though, tells me that even considering all the things I am doing to be where I am now, and achieve my goals, there's some latent gift, or desire, or passion in me, that is yet to be revealed. There's got to be more.
My daughter brought home a CD of Dr. Myles Munroe last week. She and some friends heard him teach at a local church. I have played and replayed that teaching CD. It is so chock-full of truth about identity, purpose, and potential. Dr. Munroe said something interesting that has been simmering in me for several days:
To paraphrase - God is not interested in what you've accomplished. He is more concerned with your potential. Every time you set out to complete a task, earn a degree, accomplish a goal, He is there - rooting you on, directing your steps. Because He's focused on what impact your accomplishment can have on the people He loves. But once it's done, His focus moves to the next potential accomplishment. There's more in you. He wants to pull it out. Once you realize your unlimited potential, and identify your next passion - do it, and then let God reveal the next thing. Then do it...
What if Michaelangelo had died with the Sistine Chapel masterpiece still on the inside of him?
What if Beethoven had died, never having written a single symphony?
What if Mary had had an abortion?
The challenge, according to Dr. Myles Munroe, is to die empty! Paint everything that is in you, write every book, sing every song, build every building, design every website, plant every seed, take every photograph, do it all. Don't die with those things still inside of you, and rob others of what you were supposed to share.
I don't know, but maybe this restlessness in many of us, is the glimmer of understanding that God is about to uncover a new passion, and reveal a new gift that only we can offer to those around us.If you should die today, what is that thing inside of you right now, that might keep you from dying empty?
God help me to fulfill my potential.