The word “Occupy” caught my attention while scrolling through a social media post. As I began to research that word, this phrase rose up on the inside of me: “Occupy with Purpose.” I grabbed my handy digital Strong’s Concordance to find out what this word was all about. In Greek, it means to busy oneself with.
Strong’s continues to define occupy as trading, exchanging, and leveraging one thing for another to make a legitimate gain. It clearly is not “playing it safe.” Luke 19:10-28 gives solid examples of those who occupied with a purpose and the one who played it safe (out of fear). The outcome is motivation to be fully engaged with the twenty-four hours given to you each day.
We live in a severe day and time. Things are happening and changing at a rapid pace. Many are not aware of or prepared for the return of Christ. Far too many times we have hidden behind the mask of “playing it safe” to avoid being bold about our purpose in Christ. Amongst all the changing happening around us, it’s time to turn something over and manage each day with the intent of turning a profit for the Kingdom of God.
Matthew 6:23 says ” But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
How can we “Occupy with Purpose” and become fully engaged with the process? Why not consider a few steps:
- Divert your attention: It is easy to have your focus on me, myself and I. With all the responsibilities that fall on your plate each day, it’s easy to be focused on what is right in front of you. Yet, at some point, we must divert our attention from that which has our focus and place it upon Him. Diverting doesn’t have to be an all-day event. It starts with intentional action. No one can do this for you. It has to be your decision.
- Invade your day: Jesus spent each day here on earth with a keen knowledge of His divine purpose. Every second of his day was spent applying His time to turning a profit for the Kingdom of God. He exhibited a healthy balance of His 24 hours. This included proper rest, time spent with His Father, and in relationships with people. Invading your day requires an action plan on your part. It’s more than time management. Consider invading your day with purpose.
- Conquer in all battles: Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Living life fully engaged with your divine purpose attracts enemies and battles. Not everyone is convinced of your ability to busy yourself with. Fulfilling your divine purpose will include others, but it won’t be determined by their opinions of what you can or can’t do. Conquering means you’re in it to win it. Joshua was given the mandate to possess the promised land. He didn’t accomplish that by “playing it safe.” He aggressively went after the battles with the sole intent of winning. No matter your struggle, don’t give up the fight to win.
- Capture a legitimate gain: We can’t ride the coattails of another person’s victory. There must be a profitable gain every day. 1 Corinthians 9: 25-27 in The Passion Translation says, “A true athlete will be disciplined in every respect, practicing constant self-control in order to win a laurel wreath that quickly withers. But we run our race to win a victor’s crown that will last forever. For that reason, I don’t run just for exercise or box like one throwing aimless punches, but I train like a champion athlete. I subdue my body and get it under my control so that after preaching the good news to others I myself won’t be disqualified.” Keep track of your gains by writing them down and then repeating them back to yourself in the midst of conquering in battles.
- Inhabit actual places: We have all been told that this is my space and that is your space and don’t mess with mine. That is the motto of the one who is playing it safe. “Occupy with Purpose” requires us to “catch one’s eye!” If a shiny object can stop your whole routine, why can’t one person fulfilling their God-given Divine Purpose catch the eyes of others? When you inhabit actual places by boldly doing what you were called to do safe players will drop their mask and invite you into where they need help. Allow God to ignite a passion within you that captures the attention of a world in desperate need of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
These five steps are not the only solution to occupy with purpose, but they can be a start to the journey we each take with the 24 hours given in a day. Let it be our desire to be fully engaged by diverting our attention, invading our day, conquering in battles, capturing legitimate gains, and inhabiting the places we come in contact along our journey.