You are currently viewing Dwell – Analysis and Personal Reflection

Dwell – Analysis and Personal Reflection

Creatively Living Your Purpose Driven Story

dwell verse

Welcome to my Dwell Analysis… “Human beings are relentless storytellers,” states Barry D. Jones from his book Dwell: Life with God for the World, (30). This in an interesting concept, because as human beings we are innately creative in the way we approach life. Whether that be engaging in the arts or finding a cure for a disease; human beings are by nature, creative. This does not go without saying that many are born naturally talented in a musical instrument, or born a genius in approach to the sciences, but it does beg the question of our innate ability to be creative, and our natural draw to that.

Creativity does not grow on trees. Like money, creativity is a gift, and something you earn. Even though we are born with a desire to be creative, we still need to work on our crafts. Though this process may be grueling at times, we know that the end result is hopefully positive, and life-fulfilling. Our lives are just a figment in the grand picture of the universe. We are just a blip on a radar, a molecule in a cell. Every person in existence is searching for meaning in life. Most of the time this meaning is found through work, education, or your family and friends.


In reality there are two kinds of stories we are presented and essentially shaped with, “the stories we live and the stories we live into.” The stories we live could be someone simply going to work to provide for their family, or a mother getting an education so that she could provide for her family; these stories are the present reality. The things we see in the here and now. The stories that we live have not arrived yet, and it is just around the corner. In the vaguest sense of interpretation of these ideas of life-living, I would even go to say that this grand “plan” that many people talk about in the world today, especially in the Christian world, is that of the latter story.

There is a story we are living into every day, but lack the ability to see the full picture of it. This reality especially irks me, because I desire to know all the facts, and to know the outcome of my existence. What will I do with my life? How will I change the world? Maybe these questions are too broad, but I still ask them of myself every day. What is my purpose?

Living Your Purpose

There is a motto that my university goes by, and it goes like this: Live Your Purpose. I have always wondered what this truly means, because on the surface, it begs the question, “What is purpose?” and how can one find that in their lives? This is one concept that continues to make me wonder, “What is my purpose in music, and how do I get there?” Everyone is looking for a checklist, a GPS of their lives on how to do, what to do, and when to do it, but in reality, life is not that easy. Life guarantees its uncertainties and life especially is not promised.

My good friend from the men’s chorale from my school passed away, because of a truck that could not see him pulled over on the side of the road. His story still gripes me to the bone, because I look at my life and I continue to ask myself, “What have I done to make an impact on someone’s life?” Dylan was such an inspiration in many lives, before and after he passed. His legacy lives on in the group, and he will be forever in the hearts of our choir. This goes to say that what we do in our lives, whatever that may be, will make either a positive or a negative impact on the people around you.

Dylans Purpose

In light of my friend’s life, I thought I would dive into one of the three themes of the first chapter of Dwell. This theme, idea, or reality is “Shalom.” This concept is talked about in many circles, but specifically in Judaism and Christianity. Shalom in its core is peace. Something that we all long for in this evil, corrupt world we live in. “Shalom is more than the absence of hostility or an inner sense of personal well-being… adequately [is] represent[ed] [by], wholeness, harmony, flourishing, delight, fulfillment” (Dwell, 34).

As human beings, flawed by our sinful nature, we desire this sense of peace and certainty. The words describing this deeper reality of peace called shalom, should not go unnoticed. Look at the last word on the list: fulfillment. How does my story offer that for me? Peace is not just an after-war time condition, but it is something that drives everyone in society to get to where they want to be. This desire to be safe, secure, and at peace. The world is spinning in circles like a ride you would find at an amusement park. All society is longing for is peace, which then entails a sense fulfillment and meaning.

Going back to this idea of “Living Your Purpose,” find it in yourselves to look past the “religious” element of that statement, because I believe this phrase can apply to everyone’s state in life, Christian or non-Christian. Everyone has a purpose. Everyone has a story. It’s what makes humanity, humanity.

Final Thoughts

I will leave you with this last question: How are you defining your life story? How are you pursuing your passion and dreams to its full extent, and for the Christian in the room, finding that purpose and passion in God. When you look back at your life, what will that look like? Will you be able to say that you are proud of what you accomplished? Disappointed about all of the failures and issues you faced? Will you see the bigger picture that has been forming over so many years and be pleased about it?

These are questions that probably go through many people’s minds. Many can argue the latter would be considered a midlife crisis, but really, is your life story a life worth living? Make that true, starting today, and find that one thing you are passionate about, and run after it. If you’ve read this far, thank you for reading this dwell analysis.

Speaking of questions, do you like music? If so, check out my homepage, where all of it lives!

Leave a Reply