2018 is here, whether you were ready for it or not. And with the new year came all of the new resolutions and diets (by the way the first three letters in diet are die, I’m just saying…) and gym memberships, while others just treated January 1st like any other day. But regardless if you made a resolution or not, don’t we all have an expectation for things to be better or different this year than they were last year in some form or fashion? Our desire is to see accomplishments, progress, growth and goals attained.
But what if the goals and progress that we’ve desired have taken a little longer than planned? What if your still working on your resolution/goals from three or four years ago?! If you can relate, then don’t worry, your not alone. I know the temptation to give up is immense, but don’t quit.
I wish I had a three step solution for you or could tell you the exact date you were going to get your breakthrough, but I don’t. But what I do have, I’ll give you.
Proverbs 4:25 encourages us to,
Set your gaze on the path before you. With fixed purpose, looking straight ahead, ignore life’s distractions. Watch where you’re going! Stick to the path of truth, and the road will be safe and smooth before you. (The Passion Translation)
Before I get to far, we have to keep in mind that some of the goals/resolutions we’ve been working on will take extra time and we should give ourselves grace for that. But some goals have just taken longer because we’ve gotten distracted. What’s scary is we usually don’t even realize we’ve gotten distracted. We think these distractions are obstacles we need to overcome, when in reality, we took the bait that lead us to get off course.
Now I know there are many distractions but here are a few distractions I’ve come to identify in my own life that I figured I could help you with.
One of the main distractions for most of us is fear. We fear the future, we fear failure, we fear what others may think or say about us. Simply put, we can’t bear the thought of messing up, and the next thing we know we’ve begun to shrink back and settle into the rut of the “safe” familiar past. But 2 Timothy 1:7 encourages us with,
For God will never give you the spirit of cowardly fear, but he gives the Holy Spirit who gives you mighty power, love and a mind that has been delivered, protected and secure. (The Passion Translation)
When God gives you a destiny and a goal to go for, we’d better believe that He’s already given us the power, love and sound mind to accomplish it. I’ve found my problem is that I often don’t access the power, love and sound mind he’s already given me.
God’s heart, his desire, is to perfect his love and power in us. His love will always lead us to a place of freedom and triumph (2 Cor. 2:14). What’s also amazing, is that God has faith that we can accomplish our goals. He’s the one cheering for us, trying to lead us into victory!
Another distraction is our past. We often let the mistakes or failures of our past sabotage our future, our goals and our growth. In essence we let our failures set our standards. But when you become a Christian you are given a new identity, a new standard and a new nature because of Christ. Christ restores the standard.
Kris Vallotton says it this way in his book The Supernatural Ways of Royalty,
Failures we have repented of are no longer the standard that we must bow to. When we asked God and those we have hurt to forgive us, we were set back up to the high place God assigned to us. Otherwise the worst day of our life becomes the highest lace that we have the right to lead others to. The truth is forgiveness restores the standard of holiness in us and through us.
Proverbs 4:25 gives us the secret to overcoming life’s distractions — stick to the path of truth. One of the best things we can do to keep from being sidelined by distractions, is to agree with what God says about us. He is the one who leads us into all truth. He sees us in our truest form and knows that when we align ourselves up to what He says about us, we will walk in victory. So maybe we should let him lead us to that truth rather than resisting it because we feel unworthy or fearful.
So what’s got you sidelined?
If you’ve been sidelined by distractions or discouragment, then get back up and set your gaze on the path in front of you. Keep your eyes fixed on the One who knows your purpose and destiny and keep moving towards him. His heart is to lead you along the paths of truth, he’s not going to lead you on a wild goose chase. Take your cues from him, when he says slow down or stop and rest then know that he knows best. When he says, “We’re going left…” don’t argue, just go left. God is for you and he want’s to see you victorious as well, so trust him and don’t give up! All of heaven is cheering you on! You have a purpose to fulfill and we need you to keep going!