It’s the end of December and a new year is almost upon us, so we ask ourselves, “What have we accomplished so far?” As we stand on the threshold of 2019 we will again write down our New Year’s resolutions or a new set of goals for 2019. The question is, “Have we accomplished our short-term goals; what is our progress in our long-term goals? Am I doing things effectively?”
I like what Steven Altrogge (Pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, PA) wrote in his article on the topic of goals, “…there’s a big difference between simply achieving goals and achieving goals in a manner that pleases God.” Most people today do not consider God as part of the process or, much worse, the end goal in achieving their dreams. We often forge ahead in pride without even consulting God because we think that setting goals and accomplishing them has nothing to do with God. This is our own goal and we rationalize that we have to act on it immediately.
Put God in the center of your life
We can’t exclude Him if we really want to succeed. It is foolish to think that we can do it all by ourselves. He knows our future more than anyone else and He knows exactly how we can get there.
Once we know our core values, we know what kind of goals we can set. In setting our goals for our spiritual life, family, social life, physical, professional or business, we must consult God in prayer. He will help us set our goals the SMART way. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-based).
Once we get clear confirmation from God after praying, we need to itemize our goals and add a corresponding timeline and measurement so we can track our performance. This is important so we don’t lose track and procrastinate.
We will be directed on how to achieve our goals, but God will not give us the whole picture at once so that our faith will grow in the process.
Be patient. Trust His ways
It is not enough that we have faith in Him to accomplish our big dreams for us. Faith also requires action on our part. Our goals will be achieved if we will work on them daily. We need to remove anything in our schedule that wastes our time and change anything that does not add up to the attainment of our goals. We must devote ourselves to our goals and God will honor our perseverance.
We must also be in a state where He can bless us. Our hearts and our lives must demonstrate a kind of life that honors Him and obeys His Word. In Matthew 6:33, we are reminded to “seek God first and everything else will be added unto us.” If we make Him the priority in our life, He will honor us back by helping us achieve our goals.
There will be goals that will take longer than others to achieve. Don’t be discouraged. It is normal to have highs and lows in life that tend to disrupt the attainment of our goals, treat those circumstances as part of the process and learn from it.
I heard once that, “Ordinary people focus on the outcome, but extraordinary people focus on the process.” It is important for us to consider what kind of person we are becoming in the process as we achieve our goals. We are being blessed by God to bless others. We should contemplate, “How do we create a lasting legacy whilst creating wealth? How do we impact others just as how God is impacting us?”
Finding answers to those questions will point us back to our God-given purpose. Reaching our goals has more purpose than we ever thought it did.
Honor God in everything and He will honor His promises to you.