A goal that I write to accomplish in one week is small and very precise, like a “todo“ list item, “get a haircut.” A goal that I write to accomplish in 16 years is much longer, complicated, and more like a purpose statement.
Goal #1. I will make prayer the growing emphasis of my life and ministry as I progress towards the end of my life and ministry.
Theology, rationale and strategy for implementing.
Luke 2:36-37 And there was a prophetess, Anna the daughter of Phanuel. . . .then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple, serving night and day with fastings and prayers.
James 5:16-18 The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit.
John 15:7-8 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.
Goal #2 – I will remind myself daily that no activity that I could be doing will have the impact on the health and growth of JBC as much as prayer will. As I get antsy about wanting to be more hands-on involved I will need to emphasize this to myself often in order to stay happy and fulfilled. To help grow my faith in the power of prayer I will memorize 100 verses on the power and promises of prayer at the rate of 10 new ones each year.
– prayer is very low on what is required in physical strength and energy, so this will be the perfect growing ministry for an aging pastor.
Goal #3 – I will gradually grow in the time that I spend in private prayer, and will aim to be spending at least three full hours in private, concerted prayer every day by my 80th birthday, and 5 hours a day by my 88th birthday.
Goal #4 – I will work at starting, organizing, and leading corporate prayer times, both regular, weekly prayer times and special prayer events. I will gradually grow in my corporate prayer involvement and will aim to be praying for 500 hours a year by my 80th birthday, and 888 hours by my 88th birthday.
-I will work at teaching, motivating, and recruiting more and more people from JBC to be involved in corporate prayer times.
Goal #5- There are many good books written on the theology of prayer and the practical implementation of prayer in a church, as well as many good sermons and pod casts on prayer. I will read three books each year and listen to ten sermons each year on prayer in order to keep my faith and passion hot, and to learn new methods and techniques to lead, motivate, and encourage prayer in our church. I will adjust this goal as appropriate in the days ahead.
Goal #6- The most important area of my prayer life is my prayer with Patty. This last year we prayed about two times each week. I will increase that to a “for sure” three times a week this next year for 15 minutes minimum each time and increase by one time each year and add 5 additional minutes of time per prayer time each year. By my 80th birthday we will be praying an hour each day, seven days each week.