The Million Dollar Question of Hope

By Ko nstantin Sutyagin

By Ko nstantin Sutyagin

Over the past few weeks, I’ve heard the same question from diffeent people.

They all asked that universal question that we wrestle with at different stages of our lives:

“What is my purpose?”

This past week, I went on a hike. It was a sunny day with a cold wind blowing across the top of the ridgeline. I climbed down off the crest to a thickly timbered alcove behind a cliff wall. It was a pleasant spot for lunch, bathed in sunshine yet protected from the gusts.

As I munched a PBJ, I noticed dead leaves still clinging to some of the branches alongside new buds. God still had some spring cleaning to do behind these rocks. As a matter of fact, this was such a secluded spot, I wondered why He even bothered to decorate these trees with leaves…nobody would see them.

Whoops! There goes my urban thinking. Unlike the “outdoors” that I’ve designed with my fertilized lawn, and groomed flower beds, this spot wasn’t created to be decorative. And while no one but me might see the leaves that grew here, each one had a purpose. Each one contributed molecules of oxygen to the whole of this area, region, state, planet. Each one became part of something else.

I figure that it’s the same for us. Those of us who knit or crochet may never win any prizes at the county fair. Those who write may not have their name on the spine of a book. Those who cook day after day may never compete on Iron Chef.

What we will do is stitch, blend, and support each other with our seemingly small contributions.  Even if it seems like it’s a worthless job, or a silly hobby, or something that no one will ever notice,our works are part of the whole.

My friend, nearing the end of her life, bedridden and trapped within the walls of the rehab center wondered if she still had a purpose. She didn’t realize that sharing her stories, was a form of leaving signposts for the rest of us. Her struggle with death helped the rest of us put on our “big girl pants” and draw up our courage and say “yes” to things we were afraid to do.  She didn’t realize that she was giving us lessons.

Each one of us becomes part of something else.

About Barb

I escaped from a hardscrabble farm in Oklahoma. I'm not sure why people think I have an accent. I miss the sunshine, but not the fried foods.
This entry was posted in Enough, Hope and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Million Dollar Question of Hope

  1. Lisa Nowak says:

    I was pondering on this question once and hit upon the idea that our purpose is the same as that of any bird or animal. We are here to be what we are, to live and then die. You don’t see a deer getting it’s panties in a twist over having a purpose. If it’s content to simply be, so am I. I guess you’re saying pretty much the same thing with the leaves.


  2. digipicsphotography says:



  3. auburnchick says:

    Beautifully written.

    We exist to glorify God. We are all members of one body. Each has a different function, but all serve each each other…sometimes for reasons known only to God.


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