Ask Dr. Walt 15 – Essential # 8 – The essential of discovering your destiny OR How to nurture your hopes and dreams

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Ask Dr. Walt 15 – Essential # 8 – The essential of discovering your destiny OR How to nurture your hopes and dreams

Have you ever wondered if you’re on the right road in life? Do you have unfulfilled hopes and dreams? Have you ever wanted to discovery your destiny or uncover your God-given passions in life? We’ll talk about this on today’s episode of Ask Dr. Walt.

From 2021-2022, I was honored to host a TV show on LiftableTV, “Ask Dr. Walt.” In this series, I’m explaining the 10 key habits or 10 essentials of happy, healthy people.

Have you ever wondered if you’re on the right road in life? Do you have unfulfilled hopes and dreams? Have you ever wanted to discovery your destiny or uncover your God-given passions in life? We’ll talk about this on today’s episode of Ask Dr. Walt: Essential #8 – The essential of discovering your destiny—how to nurture your hopes and dreams. 

You can click below to watch a video of the show, or I’ve put the show transcript at the end of the blog if you’d prefer that.


You can learn more about this topic in my best-selling book, 10 Essentials of Happy, Healthy People: Becoming and staying highly healthy or Fit over 50: Make Simple Choices for a Healthier, Happier You.



Disclaimer: The Ask Dr. Walt show is designed for entertainment purposes to give information on various medical conditions, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to help you be a more informed consumer of medical and health services.



Have you ever wondered if you’re on the right road in life? Do you have unfulfilled hopes and dreams? Have you ever wanted to discovery your destiny or uncover your God-given passions in life? We’ll talk about this on today’s episode of Ask Dr. Walt.


Hi, everyone. I’m family physician Dr. Walt Larimore and I’m pleased you are taking the time to join me in my home office as we continue our discussion about the ten essentials of becoming and staying healthy physically, emotionally/mentally, relationally, and spirituality. WE’VE ALREADY COVERED the essentials of:

  1. True health
  2. Self-care
  3. Reducing SADness
  4. Forgiveness
  5. Relationships
  6. Spiritual health, and
  7. Positive Self-Image


  1. The essential of discovering your destiny—how to nurture your hopes and dreams

IN FUTURE SHOWS WE’LL COVER the essentials of

  1. Personal responsibility and
  2. Teamwork in healthcare.

In my 40-plus years as a family physician, I’ve met many who have waited until the twilight of their lives to begin living their dreams. Far too many of my patients and friends put off finding their true purpose—their Divinely-Designed passion or destiny—and have delayed discovering the life-giving power of following God-given hopes and vision.

It’s been a joy to watch people find true freedom in not obeying the unrighteous or unbiblical dictates, expectations, and preferences of others. These people begin to discover, develop, nurture, and nourish the path in life that God designed them to walk—and their health begins to improve physically, emotionally, relationally, and spiritually. Why? Because they’d discovered a path—a God-designed path—that will always result in health, abundance, joy, satisfaction, and blessing.

I want to thank so many of you who sent in your questions for this show. I can’t answer them all, but appreciate Kylie and Jordan helping me to sort through them and put them in order. At the end of this show, I’ll tell you how to send in your questions for future shows.

1) The first comment comes from Blake in Corpus Christi, Texas. Blake writes, “I’ve enjoyed your first few shows, but wonder if you’re heading into some sort of new age, self-help, mumbo jumbo?

Blake, I appreciate your challenge. You should know that my foundation is truth. So my emphasis is that all of my shows, and all of the information I discuss with you, will be Biblically sound and medically reliable. I hope after today’s show, you’ll see that I’m no fan of “mumbo jumbo,” okay.

So let me start with this Biblical foundation. The Bible teaches that each person was meticulously created by the Master Designer—God Himself. We exist for a reason, and we are loved by our Creator beyond our wildest imagination. We are divinely designed for a purpose.

Jesus tells us then when he stated in John 10:10 that he came to earth so that each of us “may have life and have it to the full.” But we each have to choose whether to do life “our way” or “God’s way.”

Every follower of Jesus has the opportunity to discover meaning and purpose in their life. But the secret of discovering meaning and purpose in life is first and foremost recognizing that we are not our own, but that we were bought with a price. Everything we have belongs to God.

So, step one of discovering your destiny is dedicating your life to God for whatever He wills for you?” Once you do, “You will then discover your calling and internal identity as God’s servant and ambassador and look for ever-increasing opportunities that will allow you the most freedom in expressing who you are for the glory of God.

Blake, let me tell you my story of this journey. My wife, Barb, and I became followers of Jesus when we were in college. I thought God might be calling us to be pastors or missionaries. I applied to seminary and to a missionary organization. Both turned us down. My third choice, but God’s first choice, was medical school. So that’s where I headed. The rest, as they say, is history—or should I say, “His Story.” In the practice of medicine I found my purpose and saw God’s ministry flower in and through me.

2) The next question comes from Kayleigh in San Bernardino, California. “Dr. Walt, I’m really wrestling to sort out the difference between what I want to do and what God may want me to do. Any advice?”

I quite often have healthcare profession students or residents ask me how to determine God’s will in their lives. I tell them it’s easy: To find God’s will for you just look into his love letter to you, the Bible.

First, the Bible tells us God’s will for who you should be. In 1 Thessalonians 4:3 Paul tells us that it is God’s will that we should be sanctified, which means his will is that we are to live according to God’s design and purpose, remembering that we have been set apart to God for his purposes. That is what sanctified to means.

Theologians for centuries have told us that the chief end of God’s people is that we are to glorify Him (1 Co 10:31, Ro 11:36 ) and to enjoy Him forever (Ps 73:24-26, John 17:22, 24). When it comes to your destiny and your legacy, God appears to care more about your “who” than your “do”—who you are becoming in him rather than what you are trying to do for him.

You absolutely cannot “do” without “who.” Jesus said in John 15:5, “Apart from me you can do nothing.” And he adds, in John 5:19, that even “The Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing.”

So, Kayleigh, step one in finding God’s will, design, and purpose is to dedicate yourself to him. In Matthew 6:33, Jesus said, “Seek first [God’s] kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” So it’s “who” before “do.”

The critical second step then, is what should you do day-to-day. And I want to emphasize that it’s not wrestling with what to wear, or what to eat, or what profession to pursue. What is the second step? God tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 where Paul writes, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” In other words, each morning and throughout each day, listen to and talk to Jesus!

If we want our lives to be infused with satisfaction, meaning, purpose, hope, and joy, the Bible tells us that it can only happen by knowing God personally and choosing to serve and please Him daily. The practice of seeking first the Kingdom of God is simply being on the lookout for what God is already showing you every day in the midst of your daily routines.

In contrast, choosing to live outside of the purpose for which we were created inevitably results in a lack of wholeness, a shortage of passion, a deficiency of blessedness, and dissatisfaction—put simply, it results in dis-ease. For example, choosing to eat the wrong thing could cause death. Just ask Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:6).

In his letter to the Christians in Rome, the apostle Paul wrote, “I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:1-2).

The Greek word translated as “conform,” means to be molded by external forces. The word for “world,” refers to the world system or values that is opposed to Biblical teaching. So, as followers of Jesus, we are not to be pressured into or pushed along by unbiblical beliefs.

Then the Greek word translated as “transformed,” which is the root for our word metamorphosis, means to be changed from the inside out. Paul is calling believers to a radical change at the deepest level of their hearts and minds—to be transformed into people who live out a genuinely biblical worldview.

3) Our next question comes from Bryanna in Lincoln, Nebraska. “Dr. Walt, I feel like I’m wandering in life. I just finished school at the University of Nebraska but am still confused about my purpose in life. I feel like I’m drifting.”

Bryanna, the treatment for the dis-ease of not knowing your purpose or destiny two components. The first element we’ve already talked about is coming to know God and developing a vibrant personal relationship with Him.

The second involves living out our God-given hopes and dreams in the context of our Creator’s purpose for our lives. In his book The Power of Purpose, Richard Leider writes, “Purpose is not a thing. It is never a static condition we can preserve. Purpose is a continuous activity, questions we ask over and over again. It’s a process we live every day. It’s a process for listening and shaping our life stories.”[i]

Not only is finding your life story a key to achieving a high degree of health, but also discovering your role in God’s story is critical as well. I’ll often recommend to folks my friend Kurt Bruner’s book, The Divine Drama: Discovering Your Part in God’s Story.)[ii]

I have found it challenging to work with patients, students, and colleagues who claim to have a personal relationship with God and yet who still wonder, What is my purpose? Why am I here? Where is true joy and satisfaction?

Most of these men and women believe that God created them and loves them, yet they sense that they haven’t uncovered God’s plan for their lives—that they’re not in the center of His will.

Most of these folks seem to feel there’s more to life than they’re experiencing. They wish they could be doing something else. Most don’t feel significant or fulfilled. They are not at ease, they aren’t whole, and aren’t experiencing blessedness—they are dis-eased.

What do I prescribe for those who are in this quandary? Three simple words: Uncover your passion. Begin the process of determining God’s personal plan for your life and act to live it with gusto. How? I’d like to prescribe for you, Bryanna, studying the book Discover Your Destiny by Bill and Kathy Peel.[iii] It’s an older book, but it’s a gem.

4) Next up is Kristopher from Fort Wayne, Indiana. “I have a sense of the direction God wants me to go. But, quite frankly, it’s awfully scary. I’m not sure of the first step.”

Kristopher, you’re not alone. I’ve noticed that many people have an inborn wariness of their own hopes and dreams. It’s as though they believe their Creator could not possibly want them to see the dreams he has planted in them come true. Like some of the folks we talked about in our last program on self-image, they simply do not see themselves as God sees them. And as a result, by not pursuing their God-given hopes and dreams, they forfeit many of the blessings and the deep fulfillment He longs to give them.

Here’s a prescription for any of you who are wrestling with this: Take some time to consider the following:

  • Do I believe God created me uniquely and has a plan for my life?
  • Do I believe I’m in the center of God’s plan for my life?
  • Do I experience joy and satisfaction in my life and work?
  • Do I have a sense of partnering with God to bring Him glory and to serve others?

Write out answers to these questions and any others that may come to mind in your journal. Don’t be concerned if it takes you a while. It may raise some uncomfortable issues. You don’t need to understand everything about God’s plan right now—just write down what God brings to mind. Then think, meditate, and pray about what you think God is calling you to do and be.

Mark Batterson wrote a book titled Chase the Lion: If Your Dream Doesn’t Scare You, It’s Too Small. It goes much deeper into this concept.[iv] Let me recommend you pick it up.

Someone once told me, “God anoints all he appoints. He will perfectly equip and empower you to accomplish whatever task he has set before you.” We need to do all that God is calling us to do. Don’t be scared of God’s call, be scared not to answer it. We must do what God says to experience what he intends, for where God guides, God provides, and don’t you all want to be God guided and God provided for? I know I do.

5) Brody from Tucson, Arizona, asks, “Dr. Walt, what do you mean by God-given passion?”

Brody, finding your God-given passion—living out the hopes and dreams God provides—is becoming what your Creator created you to become. God doesn’t want you to be miserable! Rather, He wants you to experience joy and peace as you do the things He created you to accomplish. Many people think seeking God’s will requires them to give up all their dreams and pleasures. In fact, nothing could be unhealthier—or more unbiblical!

Men and women who live their lives strictly in accordance with their own selfish desires are not becoming healthy people—they will always have dis-ease. Those who simply seek God’s assistance in fulfilling their own agendas will not find their true purpose or enjoy high degrees of health. Even those who do what they were created to do but do it for selfish reasons—for their own benefit and glory—also cannot become highly healthy people who experience lasting satisfaction. It is only those who do what they were created to do—in a right relationship with their Creator and with the right motives (to glorify and please God while serving Him and others)—who have the opportunity to become highly healthy.

6) Cora from Hialeah, Florida, writes, “I’d absolutely love to discover my destiny.”

Cora, you don’t ask, but I assume you want to knmow how can you discover your destiny—your Creator’s purpose for you? How do you get in touch with your God-given hopes and dreams—perhaps abandoned somewhere along life’s path—and nurture them back to life?

Assuming your following the path I’ve already outlined, I’d suggest you recognize, name, and then follow your personal and God-created passion. Passion is doing something not just because you like doing it but because it will make a difference in the world in the longer term.

Frederick Buechner said, “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” Just doing what you like because it provides personal satisfaction will eventually become dull. There are only so many ways in which you can get satisfaction doing something for yourself.

Passion is such a powerful word, especially considering its root origin related to suffering as in “the passion of Christ.” When I ask you to identify what you are passionate about, I also want you to stop and think about what is so important to you that you am willing to suffer for it.”[v]

Walking in your God-given, divinely designed passion, there will be no limit to the number of ways in which true heart-filled satisfaction will come to you. Your God-created passion is not simply something you do; it’s something you can’t not do and something for which you’re willing to both sacrifice and suffer.

7) Tom in Riverside, California, asks, “I sense God directing me a particular direction. I’m a bit nervous about heading that way, but also scared a bit not to. Any advice?”

Again, Tom, I define passion as a God-given, deep-seated longing for something—a divinely directed capacity to feel so deeply drawn to doing something that it becomes a source of power and momentum. I think this type of passion is a persistent and powerful guide toward our God-ordained destiny. It can be suppressed, but it takes energy—and suppressing it can cause physical, emotional, relational, and spritual harm. Because a life-directing passion is placed in each person by God, failing to move toward fulfilling this inner desire can only result in dissatisfaction, discontentment, disappointment, and displeasure.

Thomas Edison wrote, “If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.”[vi] I’d alter his words a bit to say, “If we all did what we were called by God to do, we would live astounding lives!”

Here are some journaling suggestions for you, Tom—and TODAY’S PRECRIPTION FOR YOU ALL:

  • Take time to list your passions in your journal.
  • What do you long to do?
  • What are your deepest desires?
  • Write down the things you perceive are keeping you from following your God-given passion. List every obstacle you can imagine.
  • What would it take to follow your passion?
  • What support do you have?
  • What would you need now and along the way?

If you’re having trouble finding your passion, your direction in life, consider taking a walk and spending time alone with your Creator. Ponder some of the principles we’ve discussed. Then, in a day or so, watch this program again. Don’t expect these principles to make perfect sense—at least not right away. Let this information seep into your soul. Meditate on it and pray about it. Why? Because a passionate sense of purpose and personal destiny is the foundation to higher levels of health.

Helen Keller, who overcame blindness and deafness, wrote, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.”[vii]No matter your age, it is never too late to become the person you were designed to be.

“Passion,” says psychiatrist Boyd J. Slomoff, “is what can change choice into commitment. It is a guarantee of reward that is as everlasting as your participation.”[viii]

Well, our time’s up for today. To continue your journey to becoming an extraordinarily healthy person, I hope you will fill some of this program’s prescriptions for health. If you want more information on this health essential, you may be interested two of my best-selling books: Fit over 50: Make Simple Choices for a Healthier, Happier You and 10 Essentials of Happy, Healthy People: Becoming and staying highly healthy. You can find them at Just click on the tab that says books.

Also, at you can sign up for both my daily “Medical News You Can Use” blog and my twice daily Biblical devotion, “Morning Glory, Evening Grace.”

We’ve now completed eight of our ten programs on the essentials of highly healthy people. What we’ve covered has involved you working with, and on, yourself. In our next two programs, we’re going to shift gears a bit. Although there is much you can do to improve your personal health, it should be obvious that you also need the expertise of healthcare professionals—a winning healthcare team. In the next two episodes of “Ask Dr. Walt,” we’ll address how you can customize your healthcare plan by becoming your own quarterback and teaming up with the best health professionals you can find.

We’d love to hear from you. What questions do you have about becoming your own healthcare quarterback or advocate? What thoughts do you have about taking personal responsibility for your health? Just send an email them to me at DrWalt@Liftable.TV along with any other general health questions you might have. That’s DrWalt@Liftable.TV.

So, until our next visit, “Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” I’m Dr. Walt Larimore and I look forward to seeing you for my next episode of “Ask Dr. Walt.”

[i] Richard Leider, The Power of Purpose: Creating Meaning in Your Life and Work (San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler, 1997), 30.

[ii] Kurt Bruner, The Divine Drama (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House, 2002).

[iii] Bill and Kathy Peel, Discover Your Destiny: Finding the Courage to Follow Your Dreams (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 1997).


[v] Patricia Landry, personal communication, October 23, 2018.

[vi] Thomas Edison, quoted in Héctor Amézquita, Unleashing Thought Power and the Power of Believing (Victoria, Canada: Trafford Publishing, 2003), 119.


[viii] B.J. Slomoff, “Embrace life: Fulfill your life purpose,” Hawaii Dental Journal 32, no. 4 (2001): 9.

Disclaimer: The “Ask Dr. Walt” show is designed for entertainment purposes to give information on various medical conditions, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to help you be a more informed consumer of medical and health services.

© Copyright WLL, INC. 2023. This blog provides healthcare tips and advice that you can trust about a wide variety of general health information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from your regular physician. If you are concerned about your health, take what you learn from this blog and meet with your personal doctor to discuss your concerns.

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