Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

So many live lives of default instead of design.  There are many reasons for this, and even the most purpose driven individuals have areas of their lives left somewhat untended.

“The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we hit it.” ~ Michelangelo

The first day of the new year is always a beacon of hope for those left wanting and we resolve to make positive changes in our lives.  Problem is, these resolutions rarely make it to spring.  For some of us, we don’t make it past the dinner table on day one :-)

Why is that? 

May I suggest that it is the lack of a bigger picture purpose?  Without having of firm grasp of your purpose, it becomes easy to turn back or quit at the first struggle.  Know your purpose, and you recognize (and accept) the struggles as part of the journey. With purpose comes clarity, strength, resolve.

"Where there is no vision, the people perish".  Proverbs 29:18.

A failure to plan is a plan to fail, and this goes for every area of your life from household chores, to finishing a 5k or a marathon, to your faith walk.  The point is, make a plan, and then execute the plan.  However, in order to make a plan, you need to know where you are headed (i.e. have a purpose).

"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."  Jeremiah 29:11 NIV

We often tend to look ahead to the “some day” of our lives.  We look to some future set of circumstances that will allow us to live more, love more, do more, give more.  Unfortunately, this assumes this point of arrival at "fulfillment" is something to be pursued and achieved.  It is akin, however, to wondering in the forest and hoping you arrive at the desired destination.  May I suggest that true fulfillment is something to be learned or realized?  We need to live each day, to be in the moment.  As I’ve heard it said – "wherever you are, be there!" Make sure we are in the right forest, and then make the plan to navigate that forest.  Enjoy the journey, achieve the goal.

Developing a disciplined approach to life takes us one giant step closer to knowing, and living out our life’s true calling. 

"The LORD directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives. Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the LORD holds them by the hand." Psalms
37:23-24 NLT

The road we have traveled, even if littered with wrong turns and detours, is a training ground.  Don't believe the lies that say you can't.  Rather, use that experience and know that not despite of it, but because of it, you can!

"Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14

By now I hope you are asking yourself - “Am I where God would have me?  Am I open to His leading?  If not, what course corrections are required? Are you understanding the difference in knowing your purpose and making a resolution?  The first serves a bigger purpose while the latter, well, often serves self.

If you feel compelled to dig deeper, perhaps a Personal Mission/Vision is in order rather than another resolution?

A model drafted from a combination of Stephen Covey and Success Skills Coach Jim Rohrbach can be found on the Mission/Vision page.  I encourage you to take a few minutes over the next several days and work through this (i.e. it isn't something you do in one sitting).  Prayerfully consider the questions and the answers.  I promise it will not be time wasted!

Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

Press On friends, and Happy New Year!

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