Godly Goals Give You Hope to Endure
By Rick Warren
“I have not yet reached my goal, and I am not perfect. But Christ has taken hold of me. So I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize” (Philippians 3:12 CEV).
Yesterday we talked about some reasons why you need to set goals. Today we’re going to talk about three more reasons why goal setting is so important that even Jesus set goals for himself.
1. You need to set goals because they give you hope to keep moving and endure.
Job says, “What strength do I have left that I can go on hoping? What goal do I have that I would want to prolong my life?”(Job 6:11 GW). You need a goal to keep you going.
A goal doesn’t have to be big to motivate you. For instance, if you had to have surgery, your first goal in recovery could be to sit up in bed. Then you might work toward standing up and later walking down the hallway.
All of those are small goals, but they’re all important, because to get from where you are to where you want to be isn’t one big leap. It’s many small steps. A goal doesn’t have to be big to be important—it just has to encourage you to carry on.
2. You need to set goals because they build your character.
The greatest benefit to your life will not be your accomplishments but rather what happens inside you while you’re moving toward your goal.
God is more interested in your character than your accomplishments. While you’re working on your goal, God is working on you. He is building your character, and that’s what’s going to last for eternity.
That’s why Paul says in Philippians 3:12,“I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize”(CEV). It takes energy, effort, and purpose to reach your goal, and the result is that you become more like Christ.
3. You need to set goals because good goals will be rewarded.
Proverbs 11:27 says, “If your goals are good, you will be respected”(GNT). When you give your life to a good goal, it brings honor and builds a legacy on Earth.
But the real reward in setting good goals is going to come in eternity. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 9:25-26, “All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step”(NLT). Paul was a purpose driven goal setter. You need to be that, too, so that you can win the prize that God has prepared for you in heaven.
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Learn how to pray prayers that expect answers!
Do you sometimes struggle with how to talk and listen to God? The good news is he longs to hear your prayers, whether it’s a bold cry or a whisper. And your words don’t need to be perfect. He delights in you when you come before him—in thanksgiving and petition.
Jesus says in John 15:7 . . .
“If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”
So the key to praying with hope and expectation is abiding in Christ—and we want to help you do that with the all-new Daily Hope Prayer Journal. Your faith will be strengthened and you will be blessed as you look back on your written prayers and see how God has faithfully answered them.
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• Bible verses and suggestions to help you pray for specific people and situations
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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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