A Birthday Wish for my Facebook Friends

Photo Credit: Bonnie Poquette (Main Street, Bethel, Maine)

I thank God for the circle of friends He has put around me. Some of you I know very well. Others, not as much. I’m sure that is my loss. You all lead such interesting lives. I’m grateful to see posts about your families, your careers, your adventures, your opinions, and even what you ate last night. It’s funny how different we all are, isn’t it? Some of you are very outgoing, and some are more quiet and reserved. Some are very ambitious, and others just sort of take life as it comes. Some of you have traveled all over the world, and others have lived in the same place nearly your whole life.

On this my 52nd birthday I have a wish for my Facebook friends. It is a wish that applies to each and every friend, regardless of who they are. My wish is that whoever you are and wherever you are, whether we know each other really well…or just a little, my wish is that you come to understand the purpose of your life…and you live it.

We all began life as pretty selfish little creatures. Oh, you were a cute baby for sure. But your heart was selfish, just like mine. We had needs and desires, and we spent a good deal of time making sure these needs were known! Over time we came to appreciate, hopefully, that the world doesn’t actually revolve around us. That’s called maturity. But still, even that falls short of really knowing the reason why we were placed on this earth and what we should be doing about it. My wish is that you come to grasp God’s purpose for making you.

He did make you, you know? You weren’t an accident…you were created with a purpose (Ps. 100:3). Yes you, with all your interesting hobbies, relationships, challenges, talents, and opportunities…He made you. He knew you before you were born. He planned your birthday, your parents, your life.

And you and I do have a purpose. I hope you know it. My birthday wish is that you truly know the awesome reason for your life…and that you are pushing forward toward that purpose every day. Until we know this, we are spinning our wheels but making not progress. You and I need to know why we are here.

At 52 I feel like I’m finally starting to understand the purpose of life. As I see it, there is one word that really summarizes the whole goal of living. That word is “serve.” You and I are here to serve. We are here to serve God. And we are here to serve others. And it is this concept of “serving” that really runs through the whole Bible and, I think, captures what our lives should be focused on.

At the end of the day, we are put here to serve. First and foremost that means serving the Lord. God rescued His people from Egypt, that they might serve Him. “Let My people go, that they may serve Me” (Ex 7:16). A true believer is one called to “serve the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul (Deut 10:12).” Paul repeatedly calls himself a “bondservant of Jesus Christ (Rom 1:1).” We are to serve Him with gladness (Ps 100:3). As someone once put it: “The whole of our duty as men is to give ourselves wholly to Christ.”

And we are to serve others too. Jesus Himself made this clear when we are told that He “came not to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many (Mark 10:45).” Thus Paul in Galatians reminds us “through love, serve one another (Gal 5:13).”

Have you, my dear Facebook friend, come to see serving as the great goal and purpose of your life? I haven’t done this as well as I should. I hope with whatever years I have left to live them as a better servant of God and others than I have so far.

For many of us, maybe the first step in service is to realize we haven’t been serving God or others at all. If we’re honest, we’ve been spending more time serving ourselves. God has a remedy for that. None of us were born servants of God. the Bible says that we were born servants of sin. (Rom. 6:17). We only become servants of God when we turn from our sin (repentance) and trust in Christ (faith) by His grace. “And you He made alive who were dead in trespasses and sins (Eph 2:1).” And so, life really begins when we become servants, servants of God and servants of others. That’s our real “birthday.” That is when we really start living.

One day, I hope you each to hear Christ’s words “Well done My good and faithful servant (Matt 25:23).”

That is our purpose. That’s why we are here. Are you serving? Serving God and serving others? I hope you and I see this is the great purpose of our lives.

And that is my birthday wish for my Facebook friends.

Photo: Taken in Bethel, Maine

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