There is a question that I have been struggling with for a long time, and maybe someone can impart some wisdom to me on the subject. Brace yourself, because it’s one of those big, hairy questions. What is our purpose? Why are we here? Now I know there are some people who can speak confidently about this, and maybe I’m just slow, but I’m not one of them. When I read the Bible for answers, I’m looking for something clear and definite. I’m looking for chapter and verse and quotations from God with a capital G. Something that begins with, “ The reason I made you all, and the purpose that you are here is….” (Genesis 1:32 -42) Maybe it’s in there somewhere, but I haven’t run across it. Of course this question has a couple of angles to it. The question can be applied to mankind as a whole, or it can be personal for a particular individual. I have no doubt that there are people that have the answer for them personally, and I envy them. Some have heard the distinct call to be something or other. I’m not one of them either. Now that I’m past the half-century mark in life, I’ll settle for just the broad answer. But I’m struggling with it.
The closest I’ve come is a couple of Scriptures, one from the Old Testament and one passage from the New Testament. The Prophet Micah wrote: “He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you, But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:9) Although this seems to be a pretty direct statement, it is like a lot of other ones I’ve considered. There are lots of Scriptures that tell us what to do, but don’t necessarily tell us why. The question about purpose is a question of “why?”. The part at the end does seem like a good candidate though; “Walk humbly with your God?”. Why are we here? To walk humbly with God. Maybe that’s it, but it just doesn’t feel complete.
So I look at a passage from the Apostle Paul, who wrote, “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son,” (Romans 8:28-29a) Verse 28 mentions God’s purpose and verse 29 seems to tell us what that His purpose is – I think. It says he decided that we would become conformed to the image of His Son. His son, of course, is Jesus Christ. So the reason we were made is to become conformed to the image of Christ? Clearly, that is what we are supposed to work toward. But is it the reason?
Perhaps, the reason we are here is to become conformed to the image of Christ. But that leads to 2 other questions. Why are we to become like Christ? And, what does that look like?” I think maybe that‘s where Micah 6:8 comes in. Perhaps looking like Christ is as general as doing the right thing and being kind to others. And maybe we do it to walk humbly with God. And although that could look differently, and actually be different for different people, maybe that’s part of the deal. Maybe, just maybe, walking humbly with God means going along with Him without knowing exactly where we are going…..or why.