Goals are important, but goals alone, without faith, can end up being nothing but fantasies.
“Human life is but a breath, and it disappears like a shadow. Our struggles are senseless; we store up more and more, without ever knowing who will get it all.
“What am I waiting for? I depend on you, Lord!”
Psalm 39:6–7 CEV
Goals that are not coupled with genuine faith can kindle a fire of inner emptiness even when they are achieved. Solomon discovered this when he completed all his lofty goals, but left God out. He built huge homes, gardens, and cities. But Solomon felt hollow after all his achievements. He reached all his goals but became cynical and frustrated—empty without the relationship with God he once enjoyed. He wrote:
So I came to hate life because everything done here under the sun is so troubling. Everything is meaningless—like chasing the wind.
I came to hate all my hard work here on earth, for I must leave to others everything I have earned.
And who can tell whether my successors will be wise or foolish? Yet they will control everything I have gained by my skill and hard work under the sun. How meaningless!
So I gave up in despair, questioning the value of all my hard work in this world.
Ecclesiastes 2:17–20 NLT
Human goals alone can produce things that won’t last because, as Jesus said, the flesh can only produce more flesh. But if your dreams, visions, and goals are born of the Spirit, they will be spirit. They will count for eternity and last forever.
That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
What are Faith Goals?
- Faith goals carry the astonishing power to transform your life, family, marriage, ministry, or business into an amazing and successful adventure.
- Faith goals furnish you with the power and means to achieve 100 to 1000 times more in perhaps half the time.
- Faith goals provide you with the opportunity for remarkable intimacy with God.
- Faith goals are rooted in the Bible.
Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]
Hebrews 11:1 AMP
So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing.
1 Corinthians 9:26 NLT
The Difference Between a “Goal” and a “Faith Goal”
Some sincere people set goals and work themselves into the grave, trying to achieve them. They exert all their natural energies to accomplish these human-set targets. Quite often, when they do realize these goals, they experience a feeling of emptiness inside, a let-down and sense of dissatisfaction. Achieving goals on your own, by the “sweat of your brow,” can leave you profoundly unfulfilled.
Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Faith goals are different because, although they are goals, they are goals inspired by the dreams and visions God graciously puts on your heart during those lingering moments in his presence. Faith goals are goals where God works with you. When you reach them, you can genuinely say, “Look what the Lord has done!”
Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD.
Psalm 40:3 NLT
When the Lord helps you reach your impressive faith goals, others will be amazed and decide to put their trust in the Lord too. So, in addition to providing you an exceptional life, the practice of setting and reaching faith goals functions as an instrument of inspiring others as well.
- Say, “Look what I have achieved.” Faith goals say, “Look what the Lord has done!” or “You must work really hard to achieve this.” Faith goals say, “You do your part, and let God do his!”
- Are achieved by human effort. Faith goals are achieved in a partnership with God. (Isaiah 40:30–31)
- Require human energy, exertion, and plenty of grunt work. Faith goals also require energy, but it’s the inexhaustible energy of God’s Spirit (Mark 16:20)
Why Faith Goals are More Powerful than Human Goals
Human goals are important and can be rewarding. Not all human goals lead to emptiness and frustration. When you are trying to accomplish an enormous task, instead of scattering your efforts on ineffective activities, a goal helps brings the single-mindedness and focus needed for the achievement.
But a faith-goal is even more powerful than a human goal because faith goals are micro-steps that go into achieving a dream you believe God put in your heart. Faith goals have scriptural backing. They are not just something a person dreams up on his own. Goals are important. Faith goals are really important.
What happens when we have no faith goals? We drift, we become aimless like a ship that sets out to sea and then turns the engines off, hoping to drift someplace tropical. Well, I hope we drift to Hawaii or Fiji. The chances are pretty close to ZERO! (Romans 8:11)
Stop and think. Isn’t that the way many people live their lives? They just drift. Isn’t that how many ministries and businesses are operating today? They drift, hoping someday God will do something. And they do nothing to break down their macro picture into manageable segments we call micro-steps or faith goals.
Designing an Exceptional Life
Setting faith goals is the practice of cooperating with the Divine. It’s partnering with God to design an extraordinary life. A faith goal will give focus to faith.
You’re about to do something failures never do. Fruitless, unproductive people never set faith goals. It never occurs to them that faith is the only thing that pleases God. It never occurs to them that faith is the substance of the things you hope for. It never occurs to them to believe Jesus when he said, “What things soever you desire when you pray, believe that you receive them and you shall have them.” (Mark 11:24)
Faith Goals are micro-steps that take you forward toward your macro-picture, the vision or dream God has put on your heart. Learn more in my book The Miracle of Faith Goals or get a FREE session on goal setting from The Art of Pacesetting Leadership.