“The tragedy of life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach.” ~ Benjamin E. Mays
We all need goals in our lives. Our parents helped shaped us with that belief. When we were very young, they gave us goals. We should have been walking by a certain age, talking by a certain age, potty trained by a certain age. The goals got more difficult the older we got but the rewards for reaching those goals generally were better as well.
If we are like most people, we have internalized the need for goals. When we begin any project, we look to the goal — completion — and plan accordingly.
We get frustrated if we do not reach the goal. Frustrated or angry or embarrassed. If we cannot reach the goal, we usually try to modify it so that we can attain something. That is pretty much the way of life.
We need spiritual goals as well. Just like our personal goals, we have short term and long term spiritual goals. Some of our short term goals might have been learning our prayers. Until we learned certain prayers, we could not progress to the next step in our spiritual formation. Our long term spiritual goal, for most Christians, is a deep, personal relationship with God so that we can spend eternity with Him in heaven.
We might become frustrated with our spiritual goals as well, especially when it comes to the development of a relationship with God. There are many times that people will think or say that they do not feel as close to God as they had in the past or as they feel they should. That frustration often gets reflected in a decrease in prayer or contemplative time. That only hurts us, though.
If our goal is as intimate a relationship with God as we can get, we need to do everything we can to assure ourselves that we will reach that goal. Spend as much time as possible in prayer, do good works, give to the poor and needy, set an example for others to follow.
FAITH ACTION: Evaluate your short and long term faith goals. See what work needs to be done in order to realize them.