T.D. Jakes On Our Soul's Eternal Pursuit Of Why

Old folks have much to say and it is always a privilege listening. I have been following T.D. Jakes' ministry since 1999 and though his message, as a whole, has not changed, the important threads of the tapestry have undergone a significant metamorphosis. Though world's cultural landscape has turned and shifted since 1999, the man remains relevant and sharp in handling of the Word. His latest book, Destiny: Step into Your Purpose (a sequel to his book, Instinct) is one of his best and full of fatherly advice on the "WHY". It focuses on WHY you are wired the way you are, WHY you feel uneasy and restless with your lot, seeking something more. Most importantly, it tells us what to do with these awkward longings that spring up in our souls, regardless of our background or history.

This is no self-help book that teaches you "10 Steps to Being on Top". Here there are no formulas, no easy answers, and feel-good mantras. This book is not for those who are looking for money, but for those who wants to be secure in the fact that they have found their calling and seek to fulfil that calling. As the author writes,

"One can't define success in dollars or cents. It can only the quantified by the accomplishment of a pre-destined purpose! This need to answer the why of life cannot be satiated by fame or wealth or notoriety, or even education, as none of these acquisitions guarantees that action has aligned with purpose in our lives."

The author states that the feeling of wanting more than you already have sometime has no bearing on your status or state of mind. He says,
"Deep in your gut you know there is more you can get out of life, and that knowledge gnaws at your insides, brewing a lingering unrest. You try to brush the feeling away, but it returns time and again. You may not know what more is, but the desire is there...'Maybe I’m being ungrateful or immature or unrealistic to want more. I’ve done well. I’ve been blessed. I should be content with what I have already achieved.' Have you ever suppress your longing for more with such words?...You can be the most grateful person in the world, but if you have not arrived at the place God wants you to be, to do the thing God has destined you and only you to do, that longing will never go away."
The book highlights the fact that destiny is something ordained by our Creator and the instinct in us is the beacon that directs us towards it. The book says though there is no detailed map on getting to our destiny, we must press on and trust the seed God has put in us. Using Moses as an example to emphasise the uncertainty that follows those walking on this path, the author writes:
"Like Moses at the burning bush, we may not comprehend why we are thrust beyond our familiar surroundings, but we can trust that we are being drawn to by Destiny."
Echoing a similar sentiment to Solomon in Ecclesiastes 11.4 who says, "Whoever watches the wind will not plant; whoever looks at the clouds will not reap," the author warns us by saying "the road to heaven is paved with relentless faith". He elaborates on this, explaining that there is no perfect day to start working on your internal vision - whether you feel good in the morning or not, or you have a mortgage or debt to pay doesn't really matter in the larger scheme of things. He says you must have the faith to act on that abstract world you envisioned in your heart. He says:
"There are perhaps millions who are sitting on the couch, saying, 'I'm gonna...' They'll do it when their finances are perfect, when their children are perfectly grown and stable, when they've achieved seniority on the job....Your life will never be perfect. Parts of it will be, at times. You will always be juggling and adjusting in some areas of your life....Every day will not feel dreamy and some may feel like a nightmare, but if you never get off your intentions, your vision for your life may never become a reality."
The great thing about Destiny by T.D. Jakes is that it doesn't attempt to drown us with excessive quotation of bible verses. It mirrors the experience of sitting at the side of an old man, listening to tales, anecdotes and advice about life - all of which reflects biblical principles.

I have always felt it is immature to merely quote scriptures on any topic, add few lines of commentary to spruce it up, then consider the job done. It takes spiritual insight and hard work to extract spiritual wisdom from situations and highlight Gods will within. Destiny by T.D. Jakes has done the later and done it well.

One of the few downsides of this book is that the author should have stressed MUCH MORE about the reality of destiny - that your calling might not necessarily bring you fame nor riches. I find that it is easy for people to assume or conflate personal ambitions with pursuing God's purpose, a fallacy that a large part of Christendom has believed for years, to its detriment.

Having said that, Destiny by T.D. Jakes is a valuable resource for those striving to do God’s will on earth. If you are in that group, then this book is for you.

Destiny: Step into Your Purpose is written by T.D. Jakes and published by FaithWords (August 4, 2015).

Many thanks to FaithWords for review copy. All images are © to their respective owners.

Destiny: Step into Your Purpose, T. D. Jakes - Amazon.com


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