By Rick Warren
“I do not run without a goal. I fight like a boxer who is hitting something — not just the air.” 1 Corinthians 9:26 (NCV)
Without goals you have no chance of a different 2014 than you experienced in 2013. The default in your life will always be more of the same. Long-term goals keep us from being discouraged by short-term setbacks.
We all have setbacks. I deal with them every day, but those setbacks won’t slow you down if your focus is on something you’re trying to achieve down the road. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 9:26, “I do not run without a goal. I fight like a boxer who is hitting something — not just the air” (NCV).
You don’t want to spend 2014 hitting the air, so ask yourself the following questions:
What’s your goal for your marriage?
What’s your goal for your family?
What’s your goal at work?
What’s your goal in your spiritual development?
Without goals, you’ll simply coast and never live the life God intends you to live. But goals alone aren’t the answer. God doesn’t appreciate every goal you set.
God blesses goals that:
Bring Him honour: The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:31, “Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (NIV). You can do everything — other than sin — for the glory of God. If you’ve got the right motivation, anything can be done to his glory.
Are motivated by love: God is far more interested in why you’re doing something than what you’re actually doing. God won’t bless a goal established because of fear, but he will bless a goal established because of love. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 16:14, “Do everything with love” (NLT). Your goal must either be an expression of love to God or people.
Fulfill one of His purposes for your life: God put you on Earth to do five things: bring God pleasure, be a part of his family, become like Christ, serve God, and share your life message. If your goals are part of fulfilling one of these purposes, God will bless them.
Are set in faith: Your goals must be big enough that they’ll take God’s help to fulfill. Instead of setting a goal of losing 10 pounds in 2014, why not decide to lose 50? You’ll need to depend upon God for that one. The Bible says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” Hebrews 11:6a (NIV).
Are achieved by God’s power: You will not stick to your goals for 2014 without God’s power. You won’t get healthy on your own. You won’t improve your marriage on your own. The goals that really matter in life can’t be achieved without the power of God.
Take a look at your goals for 2014. Are they goals that will honour Jesus? If you don’t have any goals, start today and create some.
Talk It Over
What are some of the goals you’ve set for yourself in 2014?
Are the goals you’ve set for 2014 the kind that God blesses? Why or why not?
What do you want to be different about 2014 than last year?
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