This week I want to wrap up our purpose profile on Joshua as we look at a story during which Joshua taught others to have the same kind of success he had. Isn't it time that you also encouraged others to step out and fulfill their purpose? Leadership is not something you do to people, but something you do with people, and Joshua embodied that principle in the story we are going to read. Let's get started.
A LEARNING LESSON
Last week we read how the Lord had stopped the sun so Joshua could defeat his enemies. In the process, Joshua had captured five kings, trapping them in a cave where they had gone to hide. The Lord had granted Joshua great success, but then Joshua wanted to use his success as a learning lesson for those who were fighting with him. Here is what he did:
Joshua said, "Open the mouth of the cave and bring those five kings out to me." So they brought the five kings out of the cave—the kings of Jerusalem, Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish and Eglon. When they had brought these kings to Joshua, he summoned all the men of Israel and said to the army commanders who had come with him, "Come here and put your feet on the necks of these kings." So they came forward and placed their feet on their necks. Joshua said to them, "Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Be strong and courageous. This is what the Lord will do to all the enemies you are going to fight." Then Joshua struck and killed the kings and hung them on five trees, and they were left hanging on the trees until evening (Joshua 10:22-26).
Joshua was not content to be victorious. He knew that many battles were ahead and he wanted those with him to be prepared to do great things. Joshua was not content to win; he wanted to teach others to win as well.
SHARING YOUR WEALTH
If you are not careful, you quest for purpose can be a selfish endeavor. It can degenerate into what you can do and how you can be fulfilled. That's not all bad, yet you must be mindful that you are going through and accomplishing what you are so you can share your wealth with others. Your wealth isn't necessarily money, but rather the experience and lessons you learn along the way, lessons that can help others in their own quest for purpose and meaningfulness.
How can you share the wealth, so to speak? How can you teach others how to put their feet on their enemy's neck? You can realize that you have something to share with others and stop devaluing who you are, what you do and where you are. When you realize how valuable your experience is, you can find opportunities to teach, write, broadcast, mentor or coach. You can look for opportunities to share what you have now, trusting that you will not lose anything when you do. Instead, God will give you more, whatever the "more" is that you need to finish your work and fulfill your purpose.
Since 1991, I have looked for ways not only to find my purpose, but also to equip others to find theirs. I have done that through teaching many seminars. I wrote my first book in 1995, and founded PurposeQuest, my company, in 1998. I started my website in 1999, and from the beginning it has been devoted to publishing free material that would help others find purpose. All the while, I kept writing books, and I have authored 27 as of this Memo.
I have also started the My PurposeQuest online television show and started five different radio shows with about 250 episodes devoted to purpose that gave others a chance to share their purpose stories. I have traveled the world to talk to anyone who wanted to listen to me speak about purpose. Those travels have taken me to 42 nations. It's been a fantastic ride, and I trust it's not over. As soon as I have received an insight or new perspective on purpose or productivity, I have found a way to share my wealth with others, teaching them some new way to put their foot on the neck of their enemies, such as fear, unbelief, and doubt.
When you do something good and meaningful this week, stop to think who you can include in the process and how you can do it. When you are about to step on your enemy's neck, bring someone along to enjoy it with you and then see how you can help them do something purposeful. When you do, you won't just have a great week but also a meaningful life.
Feel free to post your comment to this Memo on the site where it is located.
INTERNET VIDEO: Your PurposeQuest is a show that I do on a monthly basis with guests who tell their purpose stories. You can view my shows on my Vimeo channel.
CHURCH MESSAGE: I spoke in my local church last week and the title of my message was "What's In Your Heart?" You can watch or listen to it through the church's website.
RADIO AND OTHER MESSAGES: Many of my radio shows and my spoken messages are in the archives of my personal website. Feel free to browse there and find something of interest to you as you seek your purpose.