Goals, Dreams, Visions, and Purposes In Life
Our goals, dreams, visions, and purposes in life are valuable when they reflect our thinking. You and I are programmed to achieve. It is just IN us to be creative, industrious and goal oriented. In Genesis, God gives this edict to Adam and Eve, "Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:28)
There is a store in Oregon named 'Made In Oregon'. It contains all kinds of products that are from the state of Oregon. The name implies all the great things from Oregon can be found inside. Likewise, if we back up one verse in Genesis, to Genesis 1:27, God says, "So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them." Mankind was created with all of the creativity, drive, vision, and goal-oriented potential inside of us. You and I have inside of us all that we need to be dynamic forces of good.
So, what are your goals, dreams, visions, and purposes in life? Do you merely wake up and trudge through your day? Conversely, do you wake up with the mindset to pursue and achieve? Each day we wake up to a whole new 24 hours of possibility. We get a clean slate to make the most of our new day. Jeremiah tells us, in Lamentations 3:20-23,
"My soul still remembers
And sinks within me.
This I recall to my mind,
Therefore I have hope.
Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness."
Jeremiah is the prophet who prophesied to Israel during a kind of spiritual dry time. He was sad about the lack of turning back to God. Yet, even so, he acknowledged the faithfulness, compassion and mercy of the Lord God to us daily. Even when we are going through tough circumstances. Even when our struggles may seem overwhelming. Even when our hope may seem a long way off. God's presence and mercy are new EVERY MORNING.
So what is it going to take for you and I to renew and pursue our goals, dreams, visions and purposes in life? COURAGE. Courage to set goals. Courage to dream big. Courage to pursue a vision. Courage to live with purpose. Courage to live each day of our lives with a passion born of direction. You and I are destined to grab ahold of life and truly LIVE...
One of my favorite sayings is "Love the life you live. Live the life you love." (Bob Marley) There is so much richness in these two sentences. We only get to spend each day once, yet we often settle for living like each day is common and meaningless. Think of someone you have crossed paths with who has an insatiable appetite for life? Can you picture him/her? Now put your face into that picture. Dare to believe that you can live abundantly.
Now that you have this mindset, take the time to speak to the Father and ask him to re-connect you with all that he has already put into you. Ask him to connect you with your goals, dreams, visions and purposes. He will. Jesus said so himself in Mark 11:22-24. "So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them."
You and I have can have the attention of the creator of all that is. God wants to be connected with us. God wants to be a part of our goals, dreams, visions and purposes. His plan is to use people just like you and me to show his goodness, love, mercy and grace to the world. So what are we waiting for? Now starts....well, NOW.
Set goals. Dream big. Pursue a vision. Live purposely. Then,...,write it down. Why? A goal not written down is merely wish for a better life. You and I are meant to achieve, not merely talk about achieving. Talk is cheap, ... , and easy. Let's be people who DO.
I have run across people time and again who SAY one thing yet LIVE another. We are all wary of people who are like this as we don't know what to believe about them. You don't know who will show up...the words and ideals or the reality of actions. Do you and I do this as well? Hard to tell, as we are a bit blind to ourselves. Do you ever wonder if you do this? Take a deep breath and ask the people who you are closest to. They will know.
Jesus says, in Matthew 5:37, "But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one." Once we have a clearer picture of our current state of living, then we can plan for a better future. Let's learn from our past, but then have the courage to adjust and move in a better direction.
DO NOT beat yourself up for the past. This will not do anything for you. If God can forgive and separate us from our sin, then we should let it go as well. John says, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9) Turn yourself around and move forward. Learn from the past and our tendencies, then turn around, face forward and move! Move toward your goals, dreams, visions and purposes.
Every day we have a new 24 hours. I fully intend to make the most of my new 24 hours, every day. That is one of my daily goals. Another is to make someone's day a little brighter every day, with a word of encouragement, gift, or helping hand. What are your daily goals? How can you impact the world around you for good today?
To finish, take time to develop a game plan. Be brave, bold and intentional. Also, be reasonable. Set up a plan that you believe in and want to work towards. If you are stumped....then consider this; 'be the change you want to see.' That will be a good start.
Have a great day!