My overriding goal is to get better. Some things I won’t get better at, though, I will probably do worse. I will run slower and less; I will bike slower, I will get dressed slower, it will take me longer to do most projects in my shop, it will take a lot longer to get our winter wood in, almost everything physical I will do slower, I will probably even fish slower!
But my big goal of getting better has to do with my character, maturity, and Christ-likeness. I hunger and thirst to be more righteous; I agonize over my character flaws, the things I say that I know are wrong the second they come out of my mouth. The irritability that I often feel, I would like to be forever done with. The critical and judgmental thoughts I have towards people around me, I would like those gone too. The laziness that I sense slowly creeping into my life because of the increasing difficulty of doing things physically, I would like to conquer that one, stomp it to death.
It is difficult to write goals for those things, but I can write a Bible reading goal, a scripture memory goal, a prayer goal, a journaling goal, a worship God goal, and others like that. Spiritual discipline goals that will result in God working in my life, changing me from the inside out, giving me power, giving me wisdom, giving me joy, making my soul healthy, helping me sense His joy and pleasure in me as His son.
Spiritual disciplines are designed by God to make us like Himself in character. They are supernatural in their effect on my heart, my attitude, my motives, and my thoughts. The problem is that my flesh, my sin nature does not want to do any of the disciplines. That is why I set goals. Goals are the most powerful tool to overcoming my flesh. Paul said, “I don’t run without aim and I don’t box as beating the air, but I beat my flesh and make it my slave.” But, my flesh hates goals also, in fact my flesh fears goals, as does the devil and his demons. Please help me Lord, we can do this.