This weeks topic is to write about achieving a personal goal or realizing a dream come true. Please take a few minutes to check out Gil’s thoughts in Monday’s installment.
I should start by admitting I know very little about accomplishing personal goals or having my dreams realized.
And yes, I see the wee bit of ironic correlation between the two.
As a young person, I was never goal oriented. Try as my mother may to get me to set and keep a goal, I refused. Setting a goal equated to failure in my feeble mind. I was good enough at failing, thank you very much, so I wasn’t going to set myself up any more for it.
Much of my life has been spent “going with the flow” and I have envied those who had more drive than me. I know lots of “make it happen” types, those who see a vision for their future, develop the plan to achieve it and . . . make it happen. For years, I’ve felt a thirst for just an ounce of their drive and determination, feeling like this was just another area in which I fell short.
And when I signed up to run a half marathon, I wasn’t viewing it as “setting a goal”, though, it was kind of like circuitously setting a goal. Even then, though, I only committed myself to “running part of it”. I thought it would be a good time with my friends, help get me in shape, and give me something to do. It wasn’t about finishing at a certain time or finishing at all for that matter. It was just about doing something new.
But as I lined up at the start, with 17,000 of my closest friends, in the pre-dawn light of Miami, overcome by emotion, tears began to run down my cheeks. I thanked God for placing me there at that precise moment, for challenging me, and for contnuing to encourage me to step out of my box and attack new challenges and overcome new obstacles. In that moment, and only that moment, after 6 months of
half-assed training and preparation, I knew for the first time that I could and would run the entire race. I had all the strength I needed, not because I had trained hard or hustled like I should have, but simply because I had the strength of the Lord behind me.
Philippians 4:13 was the first verse I ever memorized. Probably more than 20 years ago. At the request of my tennis coach, I taped it to the inside of the throat of my racquet and would mumble it whenever I tossed the ball into the air to serve, serving being the weakest part of my game.
It wasn’t until I began that race, though, that it sank into my heart and began being weaved into the fiber of my being. “I CAN DO anything through Christ who strengthens me.” I have His strength and His power inside of me. I don’t need to rely on my own abilities or talents when His are limitless. It doesn’t matter if I’m the least capable person on the planet, if I am doing what He is telling me to do, then He will equip me with whatever I need to do it.
I hear people say all the time, “I can’t run”. Heck, I’m as guilty of it as the next guy. But now I know better and I think, “what a crock of shit”. You can do anything, too.
To me, setting and achieving goals isn’t the be all, end all. I know that many, many people thrive off them and accomplish many wonderful things because of their drive to do so. I teach goal setting to my home buyers and I know it is a valuable tool for many people to achieve greatness.
However, I think it’s time for those of us less driven to achieve, to embrace the fact that we are a little bit different, and that is perfectly okay because if we rely on the Lord, He will make us every bit as capable and able of achieving greatness as the very best goal setter.
I’ll even go so far as to say that since ultimately, what He desires from us most is dependence on Him, that this worldly shortcoming could just be a heavenly advantage.