Finding Purpose in “Nothing”

What goes through your mind when you are expecting something to work out and nothing happens? I get pretty disappointed every single time. Recently I’ve been meditating on the Book of Psalms. I noticed a pattern where the writer begins by listing his troubles in the beginning or is expressing disappointment over things that are not going according to what he expected, but still, he finds purpose in praising God who is in control. 

Wait!! How is that possible? How can you find purpose when nothing goes your way? I want to point to a Psalm which is known as “The Shepherd’s Psalm” (Psalm 23). The psalm talks about how a shepherd takes care of his sheep. The opening statement is classic; it says when the Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want of anything. Of course, I always say that God is in control, yet I always seek something more and can never be satisfied without things in my control. Through the next verses, the psalmist talks about the Lord leading through various phases in life that show His sovereignty and demonstrate His love for me.

I cannot believe how a simple psalm can proclaim so much about God’s love for me. He is not only with me through the good times, but also through the bad times. But how does that help in finding purpose? It’s a very simple answer, God who is my shepherd, the creator of everything on this earth is with me, what more shall I need? Even though I lack everything, in Christ I have everything that I need, my cup overflows with joy.

Having God is not enough, right? I know that the first step towards any goal is going to start with a blank paper that is open to endless possibilities. It can be used to write, draw, paint, wipe, or be discarded away. When the Lord is my shepherd, am I really letting Him take my life by the green pastures, still waters, in the path of righteousness, or letting Him anoint my head with oil? I believe that Christ started working in my life when I let Him into my heart at 12 years of age, leading me through experiences, incidents, learning curves to teach me, guide me, transform me, and make me into a beautiful canvas which praises His name.

Every step of the way is abundant with resources without which I could not have gone further. When nothing seems to happen in my favor, I am disappointed initially, but I remember the Lord’s goodness in the past and I trust Him to fulfill His will for my life that will bring Him glory. 

I love what it says in Romans 5:3-5:

“More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”

My purpose in nothing is to rejoice in Him because of God’s love which leads me in every situation.

David Soudmalla