You’ve probably read the mission statements of businesses or churches. They are designed to help us understand their purpose and why they do what they do.
My pastors at High Desert Church have come up with this simple but powerful purpose statement:
“Preparing every generation to change their worlds for Christ.”
Take a look at Chick-Fil-A’s mission statement:
“To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.”
And you thought it was just to make the most awesome chicken, fries, and sauce! Oh, maybe that’s just me 🙂
Recently, my middle son Chad who happens to be a music and youth pastor shared a post on Instagram about the importance of writing a life statement for yourself.
I couldn’t agree more.
I believe God has a personal mission for individuals, not just organizations.
Actually, I like to call it a manifesto. It’s just a cool word, right?!
Chad’s definition of a manifesto is as follows:
A Christian Manifesto is simply a motivational statement of purpose that serves to create a foundation of truth, safeguard against lies, and create a path for your future.
Sounds good. But at first blush, it might seem intimidating. No worries. Let me break it down for you.
Four points to incorporate as you create a manifesto
—Who you are in Christ.
Are we the sum of all our successes and failures? What others say? Our status? What we see in the mirror?
No! our identity cannot be found in this world.
Our identity comes from our Creator. God alone defines you and me.
Chad says, “We are in a constant state of comparison in which we never seem to measure up. The Bible warns us that the enemy is looking for ways to destroy us (1Peter 5:8). Evil’s tactic is always lying. The best way to combat lies is with the truth.”
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17
We must not only know who we are in Christ, but we must also believe it. Embracing God’s truth statements are a critical part of our manifesto.
I use Neil Anderson’s “Who I am in Christ” for a list of scriptures.
—What do you believe?
“What comes to mind when you think about God is the most important thing about you.” ~A.W. Towzer
What we believe about God is going to impact our manifesto. Here are a few questions to ask yourself.
- What is important?
- Why are we here?
- Who is your Maker and what were you made for?
A great resource is Rick Warren’s book The Purpose Driven Life.
—What are your spiritual gifts and personality type?
God has given each of us spiritual gifts controlled by the Holy Spirit through which believers successfully serve others and bring the body of Christ together.
“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.” 1 Corinthians 12: 4-7
Understanding your spiritual gifts will help you in creating your manifesto. Each of us is unique. We have different personalities, likes, and dislikes.
God has intentionally designed us this way so that a great diversity of good things can be accomplished. Understanding our own personalities will help us be more successful in fulfilling God’s plan for our lives.
Not sure about your personality type or what your spiritual gifts are? First, prayerfully ask God for guidance.
Here are a few questions to consider:
- What activities do I find myself drawn to over and over? It could be music, feeding the poor, teaching, accounting, technology, health, sports, etc.
- What am I passionate about? What motivates me in life? It could be more than one thing but one or a few will rise above the others.
- What are my roles and responsibilities?
- What are my talents?
Online Spiritual Gifts Tests are a useful tool.
—What are your goals?
Based upon your identity in Christ, your personality and spiritual gifts, write down goals God has placed on your heart.
You may want to ask yourself:
- What do I value?
- Where do I want to go?
- What legacy do I want to leave?
Write your manifesto
- Keep it short and simple. This should be something you can sum up in a single sentence. You can make it longer if you like, but it should be simple. Remember, this is about focusing your life on what matters most!
- Remember to include others. As part of the body of Christ, we are here to impact those around us.
- Share it with a few people close to you. Feedback from a spouse, close friend, or mentor is beneficial and helps you stay accountable.
- Be open to changes. As we grow spiritually, our manifesto may need some tweaks here or there.
Examples of Manifestos
To become the best version of myself and help others in life to do the same.
My mission in life is not to merely survive, but to thrive! And to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style. ~Maya Angelou
To empower myself to empower others.
This is mine (Beckie): To shine the light of Christ’s love while engaging, encouraging, and equipping others.
We can make more than a personal manifesto
We can also create one for our family and our career. The family manifesto would involve participation from all the members.
Chad also shared with me a daily practice derived from creating his manifesto. Take a look at this daily proclamation he reads aloud to himself while looking in the mirror.
Do you have a personal manifesto? If not, I hope this post has inspired you to explore the possibility.
♥Please share your comments and prayer requests below.
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