For the last several years I have used the last week of the year and the first week of the new year to evaluate who I am; who does God want me to be and how I am doing. The process has continued to evolve over the years, but much of it revolves around prayerfully working through six questions. These six questions help me discern the God-given possibilities for my life.
There is just something powerful about writing down (or putting it on your computer or phone) your goals and having an intention about who you want to become! I can now look back and remember writing down that I wanted to plant a church; write a book and start a church planting network. Would those things have happened if I had not written them down? I don’t know for sure. I do know that writing these down and reviewing them periodically keeps me moving in the direction that I feel God is calling me. I personally think everyone should do it. So, I would encourage you to get some time alone and prayerfully work through these six questions:
What is my PURPOSE? It starts with a purpose statement. Just write something down. Don’t let this question intimidate you. You can always edit your answer later. Here is how I answer that question now: “To be a Spirit-led leader at home, church, and in new ventures resulting in a movement of people finding their way back to God.” It has taken me a few years of revisions to get that down. It’s a little long, but it includes everything that it is important to me. So take a shot and write down a purpose statement for your life.
What is my PASSION? Next you should list the things about which you are passionate. There are four things about which I’m passionate: Jesus, family, church and new ventures. So, what are you passionate about? List them.
What are the POSITIONS I hold? Next I list all the positions I hold in relationship to the things about which I’m passionate. For example, in relationship to my family I have two positions: husband and father. Another example, in relationship to to my church I have at least three positions: Lead Pastor, visionary and teacher/motivator. List all the positions you hold in relationship to the things about which you are passionate. You get the idea.
What are the POSSIBILITIES for my future? This is my favorite part – dreaming with God about who He wants me to be in the positions He has put me in. This is where I begin to dream about all the possibilities for my life. This is the long view and it answers the question of who I will have been after I have lived on this planet for 75 years. (I’m planning on living to 75 and if I get more time that will be bonus!)
What is the PATH for making that future possible? Now that you have a list of all the possibilities for your life you need to figure out the path to get you there. I have a path that I break into 5 years chunks of time. There are markers that I need to meet every five years if I am going to see those possibilities for my life ever happen. So take a look at your list of God-given possibilities and create a path with markers along the way that show you are progressing towards those possibilities.
What is my PLAN for this coming year? The last question you will want to answer has to do with 2015. This year is the next step on the path to your future. So, write down your plan for this year and make sure that it is taking you towards the next markers on your path to your God-given possibilities.