Bull’s Eye Living
November 27, 2018
“…Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14, NIV 1984).
I had the opportunity today to visit my friend, imprisoned outside of San Diego. As this is a government institution, it worked like the government often does, and the computerized visitation scheduling had not functioned well the week before. I arrived at 7:30 and watched other visitors line up by time slots painted in the pavement. I asked what I should do without a time assigned and they told me that they may or may not be able to get me in if I hung around until 11 or 11:30. I was due back at my conference at noon and stood there wondering if I should stay and take the chance. I remained and saw my friend.
Why did I stay?
I remained on that pavement as van load after van load left for the prison without me, putting in question the rest of my day, because my goal was more important than the risk that came with it. I did not need to make a new decision to leave because I had already settled on a goal to see my friend.
It’s the same with decision-making throughout our lives. If we are intent on reaching a goal, our inertia as we move toward that goal prevents us from veering down other pathways. For example, if it is my long-term goal to raise a Godly family, I don’t have to decide whether to flirt at the office. That flirting decision was already made with my long-term goal. Or, if it is my goal to retire early and serve Christ in international missions, I don’t have to decide whether to buy a lake or mountain home. That real estate decision does not lie within my trajectory toward early retirement and missions. Long-term goals make many short-term decisions easy.
The problem for some of us is our lack of long-term goals and our lack of intentionality in striving for them. What are your life goals? Are you intentionally striving to reach them? Are your goals in this life any different from those of your lost neighbor?
Every morning I pray, “Dear God, let me rise up, and meet you, and empty myself for you. Fill me, so that the lost may be brought home to you, the broken made whole in you and you may be glorified.”
As I seek these goals throughout my day, many of my short-term decisions are already made, since they do or do not line up with the trajectory of this prayer.
Do you have a goal to shoot for with Christ each day as you walk through the business of life?
Are you constantly distracted by decisions you would not have to make if you were intent on reaching that goal?
Let the short-term decisions in my life line up with my long-term goal of pleasing you.