Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: 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.
Fresh start – #3 Goals
Goals can be powerful motivators. They give us something to work toward achieving. If our goal is to be healthier, we may incorporate exercise and healthier eating into our life.
When we add action steps toward those goals, they give us some clear direction for our life. For example, to get healthier, we are going to exercise three times a week and eliminate the late-night snacking. With these action steps, we now have some clear things to work on to get healthier.
As we seek our one priority, Paul sets the goal for us in his own example. His goal isn’t to be smarter in the faith. His goal isn’t to live a holier life. He certainly wants those things, but those things aren’t his goal. His goal was to get the prize of heaven.
Paul knew that a life in pursuit of heaven includes certain things. As you pursue heaven, these are things you need in your life too.
- You need to be people of prayer (Look up 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). Let your heart and your mind continually be turned to the Lord in prayer.
- You need to be people of the Word and of worship (Look up Psalm 1; Colossians 3:15-17; 2 Timothy 3:14-17). Let God’s Word live in your richly and deeply as you live your life for him.
- You need to be in community with other Christians (Look up Hebrews 10:21-25). God has given you the community of believers to support you in your walk of faith as you pursue heaven.
Christ made you and your eternal life with him his top priority. His goal is for your life to be lived with him every day. That’s why he encourages your daily life to include time in prayer, God’s Word, and with God’s people (your faith community). Make a plan. Pray about it. Then, with God at your side, press on!
Prayer: Lord God, I need you, your Word, and your people in my life. Give me the self-discipline I need to incorporate these things into my life. Give me Christian friends who will encourage me in my walk of faith. Lord Jesus, forgive me when I fail and help me as I pursue heaven. Amen.