At this time of the year many of us make resolutions, a promise to yourself that you will do something you should do. Few of us turn those resolutions into goals, and even fewer of us write those goals down. Statistics prove the goals which are written down are 95% more likely to be accomplished than those which are not. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all accomplish our goals?
Many years back, my husband and I heard a sermon from Dr. Charles Stanley of Atlanta, Ga. He recommended a plan in which couples take time to plan at the end of each year, and set goals in at least five different areas of our life: financial, physical, professional, personal, and spiritual; and many others have similar categories from which to choose.
Lots of experts in the field have different recommendations for financial goals such as saving for: retirement, our children’s education, vacations, or following a budget, etc. Few of those experts tend to note there are numerous scriptural references about our finances, with over 2200 references in the book of Proverbs alone! I only wish I were able to conquer all of these!
Many of us tend to start in January with goals for getting physically fit, such as getting in shape, or loosing weight. Some of us may even set professional goals and others even for personal improvement.
All of the above goals are important; however, few of us take the time to even think about the most important goal of all, our spiritual growth. Do we want to grow in our relationship with God? Have we even read the Bible in its entirety? How do we know God’s direction for our lives if we do not dwell in His Word? What kind of spiritual legacy do we want to leave to our children and grandchildren?
God cares about every segment of our life and wants nothing but good for us. (Jeremiah 29:11) I have witnessed greed, infidelity, divorce, and various other life circumstances within my own family as well as others which has caused heartache and brokenness. Only by abiding and dwelling in His Word do we recognize areas of sinfulness we need to overcome, and we can, but only with His assistance.
Dr. Robert Jeffress has a plan recommended in his book Spiritual Essentials which is good to use to make God’s word a part of your life and spiritual goals for 2017. He recommends we:
- Set aside a period of time for reading God’s word.
- Designate a place to meet with God.
- Choose a translation that speaks to you. (ex. New American Standard Bible, New King James, etc).
- Learn to distinguish between principles or general truths such as “Be Holy”(Leviticus 11:44) and precepts or specific commands which apply to us like not stealing nor gossiping.
- Keep a prayer journal.
- Establish a program for reading through the Bible, book a month, etc.
It is my prayer that we all will take time to make a plan (Proverbs 21:5) for all of the above areas for 2017, but especially to plan our spiritual growth in order to start down the road to a deeper and more rewarding relationship with our Heavenly Father than you can ever imagine! In a world that is sometimes upside down in thoughts and actions, how can we survive without the knowledge and wisdom found from dwelling on His Word?
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. II Timothy 3:16-17.
About the writer:
Beverly has been an educator, administrator, educational sales representative, Sunday school teacher, and mentor; but most importantly she is a wife, mother, and grandmother with a passion for sharing Christ through working with Yada Yada in Women’s ministry of First Baptist Dallas.