Living Our Destiny

February 20, 2013
by Martin Wiles

In the much-beloved movie about a slower-than-normal young boy, Forrest Gump sat before his dying mother and asked, "What's my destiny, Momma?"

Momma Gump's definition of destiny was similar to that for fate. She didn't know, and Forrest would have to figure it out for himself.

"Why am I here?" The question normally surfaces during adolescence and can haunt us into our adult years. Never figuring it out leads to a life of ups and downs and failure to achieve the happiness and peace of doing what God created us for.

Joseph was probably a teenager when his brothers sold him to a band of Ishmaelites, who took him to Egypt and sold him into slavery. But through imprisonment, mistreatment, false accusations, and being forgotten by those he helped, he was eventually elevated to the second-highest position in the land.

When Joseph became the distributor of food during a seven-year famine, his brothers had to appear before the brother they had sold but didn't recognize. After he revealed his identity, they feared that Joseph would enact revenge, but he reassured them:

Genesis 45:5 – And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. (NIV)

Like Forrest, Joseph didn't originally understand his destiny, but through his misfortunes, he figured it out: God sent him ahead to preserve his family.

For those who believe in fate, there is no one in control. Fate just happens. On the other hand, destiny is God-ordered and controlled. He sees what we don't, and plans for what we can only imagine. It's not His purpose to hide it, but it normally takes time and events for us to discover it.

Parents are responsible for helping children to determine their destiny and to show by example that they are following God's destiny for them.

We need to pay attention to what comes naturally for us. These are our gifts and talents. Then, we need to pray that God will blaze a path before us, revealing His plan and giving us opportunities to live out the destiny that He has in mind for each of us.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, when we can't see what You have in store for us, open our eyes so that we can realize Your wonderful future. Amen.

About the author:

Martin Wiles <mandmwiles@gmail.com>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    I never stop being amazed by God’s timing with messages to me both in his Word and through his witnesses.


    Dear Martin,
    Good thought applying practical to spiritual, or visa versa.


    What a wonderful devotion. It should be seen by all young people and their families. I will forward it to a young woman that I mentor.


    Martin!
    Thanks for writing!
    Grace and Peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord.


    Thanks Martin,
    It is so wonderful to have Christ’s own assurance that no matter what happens His eye is on the sparrow and He watches over us. I really appreciated this devotional.


    Dear Martin.
    Thank you for this encouraging message! There is so much we can learn from the life of Joseph.
    Your prayer was especially meaningful to me.
    May the Lord continue to use your writing for His glory.


    There’s an important truth in this daily Devotion and the comment is as follows:
    “Parents are responsible for helping their children to determine their destiny and to show by example that they are following God’s destiny for them.”


    Thanks for this, Martin, it is exactly what my husband and I are praying for our son. He loves the Lord (but doesn’t read his Bible much!), working hard, but doesn’t really know what direction to go in study-wise. We know the Lord knows, and pray he will have the courage to ask the Lord, and that He will reveal next steps to him for this Fall.
    Always enjoy your devotionals.
    (BC)

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