Joseph Iregbu

Purpose Guy

What Are You Living For?

I was invited to speak to a group of MSc and PhD students a year ago at a university conference in Gent, Belgium on the theme: Purpose: Finding Perspective & Synergy.

The experience and resulting feedback reaffirmed my belief:

If you lose your purpose, it’s like you’re broken — The Invention of Hugo Cabret.


In a recent discussion with the conference organiser and a co-speaker at the student event (1 year later), both friends reminded me how my talk on learning to differentiate enablers and purpose continues to inspire them to do better, to be better and to focus on the things that truly matter.

We are naturally wired to focus on the non-essentials. Life is not about what we have, the wealth we accumulate or the knowledge we acquire. Who we are or becoming is more important than what we have. And our life’s success hinges on discovering and living intentionally in our true identity.

Understanding enablers

First, let’s understand the concept of enablers. All of life should be about your purpose. But to succeed in your purpose, you need enablers. And they vary significantly.

Your work, career, family, marriage, children and even church ministry are enablers. These are important aspects of life, I must admit. When you understand their place and function in them appropriately, they do exactly what they are: enable you maximise something bigger than them: your calling and purpose.

Often I meet folks who confuse enablers with purpose. They’re not the same. Enablers may give you the platform to discover and pursue your purpose. But don’t get it twisted.

While we cannot live without enablers, living for them will skew our lives and take us out of balance.

You were not created for work, career and marriage. There’s a higher calling. But to discover and live in your high calling, you need the right resources and environment to know and thrive in your purpose. Enablers can help connect you to and sustain your purpose.

“What am I living for?”

Recently, I spoke to a young man who was desperate about kickstarting his career. The frustration had taken a toll on him and he was on the verge of giving up.

Listening to his story I knew straightaway he wasn’t frustrated because of lack of work, but lack of personal vision. By his own admission, his life lacked direction and focus. Unfortunately, he’d become consumed by a passion for an enabler (work placement), he’d forgotten to ask himself some basic questions.

As I mentored him, we began to connect the important dots of his life; asking pertinent personal questions which eventually brought him to a position to answer the ultimate question: “What am I living for?”

Today, he works for one of the top 4 consultancy firms in Europe, fully equipped to live with intentionality and purpose, rather than the enabler. The enabler wasn’t the problem; lack of clarity about his “WHY?” was.

What are you living you?

Maybe you’re there right now — unable to make sense of life and feeling the weight of the question: “What’s the point of my life?”

That’s a good question; one that can only be answered when you quit living for the enablers in your life and seek to discover and pursue your life’s purpose instead.

Our ultimate purpose is found in God, through Christ His only-begotten Son — He’s the author of our lives and foundation of our purpose. In Him, you will discover what you were wired for and that knowledge is so… liberating.

So, what are you living for?

Image courtesy of W.A.U | Flickr

About Joseph Iregbu

From a homeless, near-school-dropout to living a story worth telling. Purpose is my passion. What's your story?

One Reply

Leave a Reply

Get Regular Updates

Join other readers to get regular updates from my blog for free. Enter your email address to sign up. I won’t spam you. That’s a promise.