What is the Purpose and Meaning of Life? [Video & Transcript]
“Meaning of Life” is one of Karen’s short video podcasts on key gospel themes. We invite you to respond, share, and engage on Facebook, Twitter, or on our website. You may be interested in some of our other podcasts, “Is Satan Real,” “How Can I Know Truth? If God Lives?” and “God Has the Bigger Picture.”
The Meaning of Life
I’ve heard someone say the 2 most important days in our lives are the day we were born and the day we discover why we were born. There is an answer to brokenness. There is meaning in life, and to life. If you’re feeling lost and alone, hold on. You may be closer to the answers you are seeking than you know.
I read something of Tolstoy that seems to speak to what I’m talking about. I’d like to share it with you. He raises the questions of his soul in a desperate moment when he nearly took his life: He said that he felt that something had broken within him on which his life had always rested, that he had nothing left to hold on to. This took place when so far as his outer circumstances went, he thought he ought to have been completely happy. But, he asked:
What will be the outcome of what I do today? Of what shall I do tomorrow? What will be the outcome of all my life? Why should I live? Why should I do anything? Is there in life any purpose which the inevitable death which awaits me does not undo and destroy?
These questions, he said, “are the simplest in the world. From the child to the wisest old man, they are in the soul of every human being. Without an answer to them, it is impossible, as I experienced, for life to go on” (Tolstoy, L. 1882, My Confession, Quoted in W. James 1920, The Varieties of Religious Experiences, New York: Longmans Green, 153-55).
Spirit Child of God
Each of us is born with a spiritual compass and longing to seek truth, to acquire a personal knowledge of God and of what is real–and it is available. I’m here to say that you do have a purpose, and the purpose of life is more glorious than you have ever imagined. What you see around you—life on this earth, that begins with birth and ends with death—is only a very small part of your existence. You existed for eons of time before you were born.
You are a spirit-child of God, and you lived with Him in a heavenly home and progressed to a certain point in His presence and among brothers and sisters. .
You have a spirit, that looks like your body in form, but is made of more refined material which your eye can’t see. It’s who you are at your very core, your intelligence, your personality–and it will grow but never be taken or be replaced or morph into something else or just live in memory. It is the eternal part of you. Your soul is your spirit and your body together–all of you.
When the time came for an earth-experience, and further progress than you could make in your heavenly home, like a glove fits over a hand your spirit, or intelligence, entered a physical body and you were born on earth.
This is a time through which you could temporarily live out of the presence of our Heavenly Parents, be tested–like when your parents leave the house on vacation– experience a range of emotions, have circumstances to prove and test your character. A physical body was essential for your personal progress. You and each of us forgot our heavenly existence and centered our attention on our current life.
We, and you specifically, arrived with a personality, talents, and gifts meant to touch the people near you, help you learn compassion, overcome sin and evil, and bring you joy. You also arrived with a longing to find deeper meaning than what material life offers, and to discover your personal purpose for being here. That longing is a desire to re-connect with your Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, and to accept His sacrifice for sin. From that longing, faith is developed.
From faith can come a personal communication and deep relationship with Father in Heaven, who knows you and loves you. He wants it be initiated by your desire to know Him and follow Him, so it is real and not forced upon you.
God sent you here for a purpose, and that is to learn and do what is necessary to become more like Him. He also sent you to accomplish certain things that only you can do. Life on earth is a training ground and is meant to be challenging. Opposition helps us grow spiritually.
Afterlife: Life After Death
So what about death? Death is the portal to an eternal existence, a door you pass through where you re-enter heaven, only this time never again to leave. Your spirit and body will be re-connected, but your body will be glorified and immortal–that means perfect and not able to die again–and you may have a fullness of joy.
In other words, because Jesus Christ overcame death and lives, you too will be resurrected to an immortal state. If it hasn’t before, is Easter starting to make more sense to you now? The Resurrection? It’s real, it’s true.
And there’s more: Those faithful to Jesus Christ can be reunited with worthy loved ones forever. Our right relationships are meant to be eternal, not ‘til death do us part. As God Himself said, “For this is my work and my glory ─ to bring to pass the immortality [--the never-to-die-ness and eternal life--the kind of life and joy God knows--] of man” (Modern Revelation: Moses 1:39 in The Pearl of Great Price; see also Holy Bible: New Testament: 2 Timothy 1:10).
This plan for your life is called the “Plan of Salvation,” or the “Plan of Happiness.” This plan encompasses the purpose of life. The desire of God the Father was and is to help you reach your full potential and attain the glorious existence that He enjoys. Part of the plan includes accepting Jesus Christ, as the Savior who paid for our sins and felt the pains you’d know in this life, and provides the means to have everything broken fixed, and ultimate joys to remain forever. The same Jesus who rose from the dead, so as He lives, you too might live.
God bless you in your spiritual journey to learn more about this plan and to find Him and know His and the Savior’s personal love for you. Please feel free to join us on Facebook, or to Tweet, or post a comment or question on our site, or to call Karen at 185-KNOWGOD-1 with sincere questions or prayer request.
Living out a great season of my life, thanks to Jesus Christ, and two wonderful daughters, a great life's work. Loving this opportunity to share faith online... I'm a single Mom, convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, second-gen Italian, from the East coast originally. Love the fine arts, dance, frozen yogurt, temples, scriptures, writing, jazz, helping others reach their potential, king salmon, ....and not in that order. God is good. I feel it deeply when people have a misconception of Heavenly Father or Jesus Christ, His Son, that lessens or cheapens Them and blinds one's ability to feel His presence or to trust in an ultimately good eternal end to life's circumstances.