Rev. Michael U. Anthony
Welcome to 2020! A new year, a new decade, new hope, new dreams, new opportunities, new energy, a new focus! There is nothing like the turning of a page into a new chapter, especially when everyone turns that page together after the weariness and frustrations of the previous chapter of life. In all of the bright outlooks, plans, goals and resolutions there are two things to consider.
First, it is important to have a plan which gives focus to our aims and goals. Let’s face it, nobody sets goals that will result in poor or less than ideal results. Without goals, there is not a sense of direction, purpose and ultimate satisfaction of achievement. The aim of goal setting is to make conditions in life better than they are, especially when the responsibility for others is involved. However, goals must have a reasonable success expectation when they are set. In short, they must be realistic. Our goals cannot become a source of deterioration of existing relationships or obligations.
Second, not many people plan for the inevitable ‘rainy day’ when things go awry or simply miss the optimum mark. For success planning to be complete, there must be a contingency and recovery component. We often rather concentrate on the exciting and ideal possibilities to the detriment of overall goal attainment.
The fact is, most achievements come after fighting through the challenges which are a natural part of the package called life experiences. Therefore, ignoring a contingency and recovery component in our goal setting will simply make room for an unpleasant surprise because challenges will occur. From a flat tire to sickness, to denial of your credit, loss of loved ones and relationships and so much more, challenges to our desired results determine the level of resolve within.
Whether your goal is a Godly cause or simply living out your daily existence…without invitation, challenges, discouragement and questions arise no matter how noble your cause. The following passages of scripture paint the picture.
“Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” 2 Timothy 3:11-12 (KJV)
“And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.” Mark 10:29-30 (KJV)
It’s just a reality check. It’s not a source of discouragement, rather a point of preparation. Be prepared to face the various twists and turns as you reach towards your goals. The caption says “Keep your eyes on the prize…No Compromise.” Simply remain focused on the goals even as you negotiate the positive and negative occurrences. Keep your eyes on the prize by constant reminders of why you’re on this journey, the benefits for you and others. Be resolved to push through to a successful completion. Do not underestimate the great value of inner fortitude. That resolve that says ‘keep on’ even when all factors say to ‘give up’.
In order to “Keep our eyes on the prize…No Compromise”, we must have a personal value system that will not be compromised for anyone or anything at any time. The important factor is not for anyone to agree with or like your value system, but rather that everyone will respect it regardless of their opinion. Respect is more important than agreement in this case because our value system determines the level of inner peace we possess and the amount of esteem others hold us in. Having a ’no compromise’ position on your value system causes trust and responsibility to be thrust upon you because serious people are actually looking for those qualities to invest in. Yes, it is attractive to have a ’no compromise’ value system which will set you apart as a person of high character. This characteristic will naturally carry over into your everyday pursuit of life, especially in the setting and achievement of your goals.
So for 2020, set your goals, keep your eyes on the prize and don’t compromise your value system!