"I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus"
Philippians 3:14 (NAS)
As I pray about and identify my God-centered priorities for the new year, I recognize the benefit of writing spiritual goals.
A goal is "the distant mark looked at; the end one has in view." Written goals help remind us and provide us with structure. They help us stay focused on what we need to accomplish. We can expect greater success when we put our spiritual goals in writing.
Pray first for God's direction in setting spiritual goals; then, write SMART goals.
SMART goals are:
S - Specific: Identify what you are going to do, and how you are going to do it. I desire to know Christ and His Word. It's my priority. Rather than, "I will study the Bible in 2012," my written spiritual goal is "I will study the book of James, completing all daily assignments, for 9 weeks. Weekly, I will meet with my small group to discuss material and watch the video session."
M - Measurable: Identify how you will know that you have accomplished your goal. By completing all five days of homework and the video listening guide, I know I am progressing toward my goal.
A - Attainable: Determine how your goal can be accomplished. My Bible study goal can be accomplished by spending 30 - 40 minutes completing each lesson.
R - Realistic: The goal should be do-able, and something you are willing to strive toward. My goal is realistic because I experienced past successes.
T - Time-bound: Identify the amount of time in which you will accomplish your goal. My Bible study goal can be accomplished in 9 weeks.
Paul pressed on, persistent and undeterred, toward the goal, as a runner races to the finish line. God's beloved, let us press on together, eagerly seeking a deeper relationship with our Lord and Savior, cheering one another along every step of the way!
Lord God Almighty, You are my Creator and worthy of my praise! Forgive me for times I have not commited my ways to You. Thank you for giving me strength and enabling me to carry out Your Will. Help me to remain stedfast and disciplined. Give me wisdom to maintain priorities and goals that please You. In the Name of Jesus, I pray...Amen.
What specific spiritual goals have your set for the New Year? Leave us a comment...we'd love to hear from you, and pray for you!