We first begin to ponder our value at a very young age; not conscious thoughts early on, more subconscious. Questions ping on our soul’s radar. How do I perceive myself? How do others perceive me? Am I valued in my family? God’s desire of course is to imprint truth upon our hearts, through the loving oversight of our parents, crescendoing with Jesus Himself being enthroned upon our hearts. My family origins were far from this ideal but I’m so grateful that Jesus was always near and eventually I experienced a conversion into a new identity in Christ as a young adult.
He is the only perfect Truth-teller and when our ears are tuned to His voice our value becomes firmly established.
Once I have a healthy baseline of my value (identity) the next questions is one of purpose (destiny). What is my function? What are my gifts and skills? By the time we reach high school, scores of people have asked us, “So what are your plans after graduation?” Likewise after college right? Truth be told, I’ve been a pastor for nearly forty years and enjoying the journey more than ever, and I’m still maturing in the realms of value and purpose. If you’re a follower of Christ the broad strokes picture when it comes to purpose is clearly stated in this verse.
For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. Rom. 8:29
If you’re a late bloomer like I was, not favored with healthy Christian family origins, let’s rejoice that we’ve been born again into the family of God, perfectly parented by Christ Himself.
For he knew all about us before we were born and he destined us from the beginning to share the likeness of his Son. This means the Son is the oldest among a vast family of brothers and sisters who will become just like him. Rom. 8:29 (TPT)
When your life intersects with a person of the opposite sex and it has potential for a lifelong relationship, you will seek to discover who they are and where they’re going. Do you see their value and purpose and do they see yours? When I first met my wife at Bible college I had just returned from a two year stint on the mission field in Asia. I perceived my destiny and purpose at the time as finding a wife and then returning with her as a full time missionary. Hence my future wife had to harmonize in her own heart what that would entail for her personally if we were to marry.
Destiny decisions are no longer purely singular; but singular in a corporate context.
Personal identity is not lost in marriage but it is yoked to another person’s identity. Personal dreams and visions as well. As a couple we need to add the word “our” along with “my.” E.G. When my wife felt led by the Spirit to home-school our three children, her purpose became our purpose. Just to clarify, I am not saying that EVERY vision will be corporate in the practical sense. E.G. If my wife decided to build a business selling essential oils, I would probably have zero function in that endeavor.
False messages of identity and destiny often create stumbling blocks in a marriage. When I question my value and also question my having any worthwhile purpose, the resultant negative focus will deplete my emotional and mental resources. In contrast, when I have a healthy perspective on my value and purpose, I am more positive towards my spouse and family. I have more to give from the resource of a healthy self-love and the anticipation of an unfolding destiny.
These two critical questions, What is my value? What is my purpose?, are asked by all of us over the course of our lives. As a single man, I brought these heart longings into my partnership with Anne. Over forty years of marriage we have sought to support one another in our quest for greater fulfillment and impact for God’s glory.
Pray Value/Purpose Over Your Spouse
Pray the Word of God into your own life and into the life of your spouse.
I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power… to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Eph. 3:17-19 (Value)
I pray that God would fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work. Col. 1:9-10 (Purpose)
I encourage you to check out my 9 minute video on the Breastplate of Righteousness. It’s a “free preview” session from our online course.