What does it mean to have passion and purpose and why are we so obsessed with figuring out ours?
As a day dreamer, I’m a bit obsessed with big ideas and discovering “me.” I’m fascinated with understanding who I am. So I also understand this need to find our passions. You hear it a lot: “find your passion,” “find your passion,” “find your passion.” But what does that even mean? A look in the dictionary, and you’ll find “fierce emotion.”
Surely people aren’t telling me to carry a fierce emotion around.
So my question started out as what does it mean to find our passions. And then I discovered that while passions are great and important, we can confuse it with our purpose.
Also Read: What Should I Do with My Life
Passion and Purpose
Definition of passion
From Merriam Webster: A strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept
Devotion: The act of dedicating something to a cause, enterprise, or activity. The act of devoting. B: The fact of state of being ardently dedicated and loyal.
Your passion is your love of or commitment to something.
Definition of purpose
From Dictionary.com: the reason for which something exists or is done, made, used, etc.
- An intended or desired result; end; aim; goal.
- Determination; resoluteness.
- The subject in hand; the point at issue.
- Practical result, effect, or advantage
So purpose – that’s our reason for why we do everything in this life. It’s our meaning. Why we exist. If we know our purpose, we know what to do in any particular moment. The trouble is when we don’t know our purpose, and usually we end up stumbling around for years. Some struggle to find any meaning in their life; others second-guess themselves.
Why do we confuse the two?
You might be sitting here thinking Kim, I get the difference. I know what it means to have a passion and to have a purpose. I probably should have asked you to write this post instead of me then, and I don’t mean that sarcastically. But I think we inherently know what passions are and what it means to have a purpose. Yet we pursue one over the other. I think it’s simply because we get the two mixed up.
Which one should we pursue?
Both, honestly. Your purpose, which is really so simple to deduce and doesn’t have to take years to find, should be your why behind your passion – what you love to do. Your purpose is your why and your passion is your what, but you can’t have passion without purpose.
Okay, so what is my purpose since you so boldly claimed you know?
There are some key passages in the Bible that stick out and give us a path. While these verses always come from the context of a conversation with a specific human in the Bible (like Moses in the Exodus passage), they are meant for us, too, within a growing relationship with Christ. (That means we don’t take things out of the context of God’s heart for us or the commands He had for people back then.)
Ephesians 2:10 For we are His creation-created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them.
Exodus 9:16 But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.
Matthew 28:19-20 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Mark 12:30-31 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
Do you see a theme? We’re to love God, love others, and to proclaim His name throughout the world. That’s our why.
The how varies, that’s where the passion comes in.
Thanks for coming around. Be sure to subscribe below for more thoughts like this.