Monday, May 23, 2005

What is the purpose of life?

In an interview by Paul Bradshaw with Rick Warren, author of The Purpose
Driven Life, Rick Warren said:

People ask me, What is the purpose of life? And I respond, In a
nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were made to last
forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven. One day my heart is
going to stop, and that will be the end of my body - but not the end of
me. I may live 60 to 100 years on earth, but I am going to spend
trillion of years in eternity. This is the warm-up act, the dress
rehearsal. God wants us to practice on earth what we will do forever in
eternity. We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that
out, life isn't going to make sense. Life is a series of problems:
Either you are in one now, you're just coming out of one or you're
getting ready to go into another one. The reason for this is that God is
more interested in your character than your comfort. God is more
interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life
happy. We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that's not the goal
of life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ-likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the
toughest, with my wife, Kay, getting cancer. I used to think that life
was hills and valleys - you go through a dark time, then you got to the
mountaintop, back and forth. I don't believe that anymore. Rather than
life being hills and valleys, I believe that it's kind of like two rails
on a railroad track, and at all times you have something good and
something bad in your life. No matter how good things are in your life,
there is always something bad that needs to be worked on. And no matter
how bad things are in your life, there is always something good you can
thank God for. You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your
problems. If you focus on your problems, you're going into
self-centeredness, "which is my problem, my issues, my pain." But one of
the easiest ways to get rid of pain is to get your focus off yourself
and onto God and others. We discovered quickly that in spite of the
prayers of hundreds of thousands of people, God was not going to heal
Kay or make it easy for her. It has been very difficult for her, and yet
God has strengthened her character, given her a ministry of helping
other people, given her a testimony, drawn her closer to Him and to
people...You have to learn to deal with both the good and the bad of


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