Opportunities (and changes) come in variety of ways. Sometimes they come knocking, other times we have to go in search of, and still others we need to break a door down in order to create one. In each case we need to take the personal responsibility to intentionally pursue it.

Recently, I had to relocate to a new area for a short period of time. Discovering it was only going to be for a month, I could have easily and justifiably quietly gone about my work and found plenty of things to occupy my time. However, I sensed the need to get “plugged into the community” even for a short stint. On the very first Sunday at my new location, I found a church, signed up for a men’s group and joined two life groups, all the while not knowing a soul.

Did I feel comfortable doing it? No. Was I confident? Not really. Was it worth it? Definitely!

Within a month, I have connected with several people, offered to help in a number of areas (even beyond my stay) and grown both personally and spiritually – all the result of having a willingness to be used, making myself available, and being intentional.

Life can be difficult and life can seem unfair.

When I have found this to be most true is when I go about my day without a specific plan or purpose. I live “hoping,” “wishing” or even (just) “praying” for something without any further involvement. I do “what is necessary,” no more, no less. This is the epitome of a lukewarm life – living to get by, doing what is “expected,” and producing a vanilla result.

God created and fashioned us with a purpose far greater than that. No wonder why He would “spit," "spew," or "vomit" us out of his mouth (differing versions of Revelation 3:15) if we are going to live that way.

The adventure in life begins when we pursue what we were individually created to do, not by following the crowd or choosing to live in a manner just to survive, but rather in a manner to thrive.

Live purposefully, live deliberately, live intentionally and you can overcome anything you believe is standing in your way.

Cliff Young is a contributing writer to Sandlot Stories (ARose Books), as well as the monthly column, "He Said-She Said," in Crosswalk.com's Singles Channel.  An architect and former youth worker, he now works with Christian musicians and consults for a number of Christian ministries. Got feedback? Send your comments and questions to cydmg@yahoo.com.

Publication date: February 26, 2013