2 Types of Goals. 1 God Over the Outcome.
"Not to reach one's goals is not nearly as bad as having no goal to reach." - Benjamin Mays, President emeritus of Morehouse College
We should Always be reaching towards something...
I can confess, there have been times when I set certain goals for myself only to put them on hold (as opposed to actively working towards them) for one reason or another...-> rejection. doubt. fear. etc.
But within the last month, I have found the strength, within myself, to start again. to put excuses to the side and actively work, with excellence, towards meeting my goals.
I didn't just wake up one day and decide I had what it takes. My positive growth wasn't so dramatic.
To be honest I just finally had time to compile my LENT faith verses study into an e-book. And as I was re-reading my notes and putting the final touches on them, the fire of self-determination reignited in my heart and mind. Especially when I got to Day 38; it's by far my favorite day! The entire experience, which in itself was unwittingly a goal of mine, was invigorating.
Many of my goals for the year, had only moved from month to month up until that point. But I finally decided to put some action into the things I desired + believed God had for me, regardless of the outcome, which is in God's hands anyway!
I'm learning (well, I'm moving head knowledge to heart understanding that manifests in my actions + attitudes) that my job is Not to worry about the final outcome.
It's beyond my control.
But not beyond the limitless reach of my God.
My only job is to do the work + trust God to do the rest, in His perfect time.
I think it's easy to forget that its okay to have 2 types of goals—short-term + long-term.
It's even easier to forget that there is 1 GOD who is over the final outcome. HE is the one who knows the end from the beginning. (Isaiah 46:9-10) He's also the one who can replace some of our "goals" with things beyond what we can imagine (Ephesians 3:20).
So maybe your goal of buying a house doesn't happen according to your 6 month timeline. Maybe it will take you a year. Maybe 2 years. Maybe something totally unexpected comes up and you have to go into your savings that you were hoping to use as a downpayment...but that doesn't mean you give up on your dream of being a home owner.
Just because its taking longer than expected, doesn't mean it's not for you.
There's an appointed time. (Habakkuk 2:3)
In the last few weeks, as I've actively worked towards some of my goals, I've seen God give me easy "yes"s, a keep-at-it-see-it-through-different-outcome yes, and a better-than-expected yes!
But I've also experienced a wait-not-now response, and even a continued silence in an area I've been looking to Him and expecting change for exactly a year now.
The yeses were obviously encouraging. But now the waiting is just as encouraging, and maybe even more so. Because my faith is driving me to keep working + keep believing because God has more in store! Even if the outcomes are different from what I expect, I know they will be crazy good!
And where God is silent, I will continue to seek Him.
Because in doing so, I remind myself that He is the only one with my answers. My one true Source. Continuing to go to him is an act of faith in itself.
Accomplished Goals. Greatness. Are not for the lazy or for those easily put off at the first sign of pushback. They are for the tenacious + unrelentless. Those who understand that everything may not go their way all the time but continue to believe that things will still work out in their favor (Romans 8:28).
Its okay to step away. to regroup. and to reexamine your goals and course of action. from time to time.
Goals can change. And they will, as we mature and enter different phases of life.
The point is this:
Whatever you do, don't give up. Especially when (not if) you fail. Failure is a part of the process, it's how we learn.
"Falling down [or not achieving a goal on the first attempt] does not constitute failure; refusing to rise and fight again surely does." - Dennis Kimbro, Author
Let's not be afraid to get our "No"s and failed attempts out of the way, because each one brings us closer to meeting our goals, getting that yes, and ultimately to our God-authored destiny!
Write down your goals.
Remind yourself of them often.
Pray some more.
Work towards them. Practice self-control + self-determination.
Pray even more.
And trust God with the outcome!
Here's to reach up to God and reaching towards our goals!
P.S. Looking for ways to boost your faith? Sign up to receive a FREE copy of my 40 Days of Faith devotional eBook! Here's the link.