(Phil 3:12-14) Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
As a Christian, should we set goals in life or should we just let the Lord lead us? On the one hand you don’t want to be so goal oriented that you leave God out of your plans. But on the other hand, you feel like if you just tell people the Lord is going to lead you, then you might feel that this is just an excuse for being lazy and never getting anywhere. Like the saying says: If you don’t have a target you will never reach anything in life.
Paul was very goal oriented. He seemed to always have a plan. And it seemed to fit into an overall master plan he received from the Lord. Notice how he said his life goal was to receive the prize of fulfilling his calling from the Lord. Then, from the book of Acts we see him traveling and writing and making plans to visit people and churches, all as under that wide umbrella of his calling to serve the Lord.
So, what might be the main calling on your life? Let’s start with our relationship with Christ:
(Phil 3:10) that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death. That was Paul’s passion and that is the supreme goal of every believer in Christ. Everything we do or pursue in life will fit under that umbrella. That helps me make decisions. Does this pursuit in life fit into the purpose of knowing the Lord and being like Him in the world? If it does, then I can surely pray about pursuing that. If not, I will ax that out of my life immediately as it will sidetrack me.
Once we have established that master plan/purpose/pursuit, then we are ready to dial into that specific plan God has for us and start setting goals toward that. The Lord has a unique calling for each and every one of us. It will be different than anybody else’s. No need to be jealous of others and what God has called them to do. If we pursued their calling, we would be miserable.
Moses had a calling to lead Israel out of Egypt and into the Promised Land. God took him up to Mount Sinai and gave him the law and the commandments for Israel. Then he gave him the blueprint for the Tabernacle. Here’s what God said: (Exo 25:40) And see to it that you make them according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain. The rest of the book reveals that this is exactly what he did. So, pray about what God would have you to do in life. Then when He shows you, go for the goals that fit under the goal of knowing Him. And don’t get sidetracked by all the things along the way. Stay focused and watch yourself advance in life!