TOPIC: BE FOCUSED ON YOUR 2019 GOALS
TEXT: 1 CORINTHIANS 9:24 – 27
Welcome to another period of 21 days of fasting and praying in preparation for 2019. We thank God for the past one week that we have been coming into His presence. Our theme for this year is Divine Restoration. It means that whatever restoration or achievement we are hoping for this year, can only come from God. But in believing and hoping for a restoration, we have a duty to perform. We are expected to be focused and not to be distracted by pleasures and worries of life. To receive divine restoration demands being consecrated and being dedicated to God’s course.
Paul talks about self-discipline in our text which is a great tool that will make someone focused on his or her goals in life. What are your goals for this year as a Christian? How are you working to achieve them? Paul asserts that we should see Christianity as a race in which only one person wins the prize which is perishable. Furthermore, he charged us to be the one person that will win the race. He gave example of himself; how he runs his race: “not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.” His focus was on heaven; to please his Master, to do according to specifications and to win the ultimate prize which is being with his Master. All other things about life like food, clothing, house, etc., were secondary. This position of Paul confirms what Jesus Christ told us in Matthew 6:33.
Beloved, where is your focus in 2019? What are your prayer points for this 21 days programme? Are they frivolous things or the things that will improve your relationship with God and take you to heaven at last? Are your prayer points based on the will of God for you? Your prayer points should focus on things that will improve your life. God will take care of other things about you and your family but that does not mean that you should wait for God indoors to come and feed you. Remember that God gives food to the birds of the earth but He doesn’t throw it into their nest.
For you to be focused, you have to set out your goals. These set goals and aims are what will determine your actions and propel you to perform. Your set goals as a Christian should be in two aspects – The spiritual and your vocation. This 21 days programme is not only meant to prepare us spiritually but to also prepare us for our vocations where we get our means of livelihood. Many Christians today are poor because they are not focused on how best to make a living. That Jesus taught us one day at a time does not mean that we should ignore basics of having a good life. You must be focused on your vocation, making every effort to become somebody in this life. Don’t just depend on your salary. Invest your time and money somewhere. Lay good foundation for yourself.
Some of us may argue that many things can distract us from being focused – family, work, business, etc. These things can only distract us when we do not have set goals and objectives. Setting your goals demands also that you state some ways you intend to accomplish them without which, it will be impossible to achieve because there must be distractions.
God expects us to live well here and make heaven at last. You must therefore be disciplined and have self-control over your thought; your actions and your words. It is proper at the beginning of the year like this to do a detox of your life to eliminate what distracts you and take away your joy, whether they are friends, your passions or your likes. Refuse to be distracted on achieving your goals this year. Press on and push yourself even to the extreme. I assure you that you will have reasons to smile at the end of the year.
I wish you a fruitful and rewarding year!