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We take three approaches to setting goals…

January 1st, 2015 Posted in Advice and Tips
Setting goals approach 1:shutterstock_122400934Why bother, it’ll never happen? Doubt is an evil thing and it can hold us prisoner for life. When we say “I’m being realistic” we may simply be fearing or doubting the outcome. That’s OK. Some call it paralysis by analysis; all thinking and no doing. To reduce or eliminate doubt pray before you set down your plans. If you don’t know how to pray find a quiet place and talk to God out loud. As in any conversation remember that you have two ears and one mouth so use them in that proportion. The more you ask in a thankful manner then doubly more you need to listen for His thoughtful response.

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to
prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

When the plans you receive give you a positive feeling go with them and drop the ones that make you feel like throwing up. Either they are wrong for you or you’re not ready to receive them.

Now you can work backwards from the desired end result, break it down into manageable chunks and space them out throughout the year towards the desired results. Be sure the starting point is immediate. Any plans postponed or delayed are soon forgotten.

For all of us doubters there is a trick to help us along. Once you’ve set the goal and laid out your plans don’t look to the right or to the left but only at the goal. Too often we let “facts” get in the way by giving too much attention to the possibilities of failure. We’ve thought it through once, made the decision and now it’s imperative that we avoid revisiting the decision or dwelling on the challenges we face as we work toward our goal. It may be necessary to adjust your plans as circumstances change so set your goals in concrete but your plans in clay!

Here’s where I love to reference the Apostle Paul. We all know what he went through as he traveled from Jerusalem to Egypt to Turkey, Greece and Rome.

2 Corinthians 11:25 “Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was
pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a
day in the open sea,…”

In spite of immense hardships like imprisonment, torture and shipwreck he “stayed the course”! He had every reason to quit and only one reason to continue: he had prayerfully set a goal and although circumstances and conditions changed (including no doubt his timeline!) he “pressed on towards the mark”. The end result is history reflected in the thousands of churches and millions of believers that grew out of his efforts. Paul changed his plans as circumstances changed but never lost sight of his goals…and so he surpassed them.

Setting goals approach 2:

To those who believe that whatever they plan will happen or that they can make it happen….good luck! Please don’t tell anyone your plans. Buy lots of lottery tickets and stay home to avoid embarrassment.

Nothing much else to say there that isn’t covered by the Apostle James.

James 4:13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to
this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make
money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is
your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then
vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we
will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogant
schemes. All such boasting is evil. 17 If anyone, then, knows the good
they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.

Setting goals approach 3:

Setting goals and hoping they’ll happen… Once you’ve mastered the techniques for overcoming negative this is really number Setting Goals Approach 1, without the struggle. You will no doubt reach this level of planning, focusing on and achieving goals as your confidence in God’s grace and wisdom grows. Write your goals down and look at them daily. But
remember, whatever the outcome, be thankful… there’s always next year!

Genesis 8:22 “As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold
and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.”

…and finally…

2 Corinthians 8:11 “Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.”

Written by CHRI’s General Manager, Bill Stevens.

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