Thursday, January 22, 2009

a few thoughts on goals

Do you do goals? I'm a big believer. Since I try to not to do much productive stuff on vacation, I've given myself the freedom to firm up and write down my goals throughout the month of January.

I try not to be crazy about it and recognize that I won't hit everything I aim for . . . . . still if I aim, I'm bound to hit a few things. I think guilt sometimes discourages us from the valuable exercise of goal setting. I think we need to face that and work through it.

I think God is honored by goal setting. It fits with the creation mandate to be fruitful, rule and subdue the earth. . . . . in goal setting we are aiming for areas of fruitfulness, we are bringing areas of our bodies and lives into submission.

Likewise I think setting goals recognizes and honors the doctrine of stewardship. All in life has been given to us. Our time, talents, and treasure are a stewardship from Him and we will one day give an account for how we used what God loaned to us.

In Genesis 1, we're seeing that when God acted he acted with intentionality, purpose, focus and with eye on the end result. Seems to me goal setting also strives for these same values.

So I'm working on goals for my personal walk with the Lord, my relationships with Susie and our children, my health and fitness and my ministry at church, among other areas.

So here's an example . . . .

One of my goals in 2009 is to clean up my sermon prep a bit this year. I have let other things crowd this out and as a result I have often found myself preparing on Friday or Saturday, my days off. The Lord has been good in blessing His Word despite my sloppy preparation, but I don't want to live this way. I want to be more disciplined, more focused, more intentional and maintain better boundaries. I discovered this week, it won't be easy. It means saying no to more good things, delegating more, working smarter, wasting time less, and priority living. This week it's meant saying no to this blog.

I appreciate your prayers.

So how about sharing one of your goals? How about setting a few goals before January expires? How about sharing why you refuse to set goals?


Anonymous said...


I'm not sure if I appreciated your blog. I don't like being convicted. That is what the Holy Spirit has been doing in my heart about some goal setting. The truth is to succeed in our goals we MUST have self-discipline.

I'll pray for you if you'll pray for me ;-)

Denene Klosterman

Sheila said...

Hi Pastor Tim,

I was encouraged by your "goals" post especially as it's the end of January and I'm not meeting all of my goals each week. I reviewed them and feel even more inspired to make every moment count over here in India. This is my goal setting:

Luke 2:52- " And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men."

In Bible study during my sophomore year of high school we made 4 new year's resolutions based on this verse. Since then, I have used this verse to set goals each year. So here they are...

1) Wisdom: 5 Hindi lessons/ week
2) Stature (Physical): Work out 3 x/ week and take a dance class in India
3) Spiritual: Spend time in the word and prayer each morning before college and find a church in Bangalore
4) Social: Learn the names of all of my classmates and write 3 postcards or letters/ week