It’s that time of year when goal setting becomes a trending theme. We set goals for our careers, our spiritual lives and our day to day lives in general. Biblical Goal Setting helps to provide an overall direction for your life and can be used as a measuring stick to see how you are progressing in your life.
If you are looking for Bible verses about setting goals to guide your process, you've come to the right place!
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Bible Verses About Setting Goals in Life
What does the Bible say about setting goals? Sometimes, we fail to realize how much practical application exists in the Bible and goal setting is no exception. In James 4:13-15 (NIV), God issues some pretty wise counsel.
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”
A few months ago, a junior hockey team bade farewell to their families and were on their way to a hockey match. Sad to say they never made it. Their bus met in a deadly accident leaving 16 of their teammates dead and others injured. We can make plans but truth be told, the next second isn’t guaranteed to anyone. In setting goals, ask God for guidance. Our ultimate aim should be to draw closer to Him each and every day. The following Bible verses about setting goals and God's plan will help you in achieving just that!
Scriptures on Biblical Goal Setting
When it comes to goal setting, I like to start off with Bible verses about setting goals. In setting goals for our lives, we need to seek counsel from God asking him to direct us so that our plans align with his will for our lives. Our plans aren't necessarily his will for our life. Another reason why I like to start off my goal setting with Bible verses about plans is that it also serves as inspiration in knowing that God has plans to prosper us and give us a bright future. God wants what's best for us if only we would let him direct our paths. With that being said, here are some of my favorite scriptures on Biblical goal setting.
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:33-34 NIV
I think the first line of this passage adequately sums up these passages. Our prime focus should be on seeking the Kingdom of God, everything else is all secondary. As you go about setting goals this season, put your Christian goals at the very top of the pile, your spiritual growth is where the majority of your focus should be.
“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5 NIVLet Scripture be your guide in setting goals for the new year!Click To Tweet
While its good to make plans, you need to be diligent in making your plans and create a strategy. A Biblical goal setting strategy forms the foundation and will lead to much greater success in reaching your goals. Here are some tips on how to set goals that get results.
“Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man.” Proverbs 6:6-11 NIV
In making plans, we need to be wise. Things won’t always be smooth sailing and flourishing. Just like the ant we need to make plans for a rainy day and put aside resources for the unexpected.
“Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’ “Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand?” Luke 14:28-31 NIV
Framework For Setting Goals:
It can be disheartening to look back at the end of a year or even longer periods of time and feel like you are putting in a lot of work but really and truly getting nowhere. You hoped to lose some weight this year or even start reading your Bible more often but your Bible is still gathering dust and the struggle is real to even just get up off the couch. Having a great Christian Planner really helps!
While its good to set goals, goals don't work unless you do the work. By utilizing a SMART goal setting framework, you are able to pinpoint exactly what you hope to accomplish, ensuring its indeed attainable. A SMART goal setting framework helps you to craft an action plan identifying where you will need to focus your time and resources to increase your chances of being successful with achieving your goals. While Bible verses about goal setting is a good starting point for Biblical goal setting, using the SMART goal setting framework outlined below will ensure that your goals are clear and realistic.
- S – Specific – Be specific, what is it exactly that you hope to accomplish?
- M- Measurable – What metric will you use to determine whether or not you have accomplished the goal?
- A- Attainable – Think about whether or not the goal is achievable, will you perhaps need to learn new skills and change your attitude towards things.
- R-Relevant – How does this fit into your overall big picture goals?
- T-Time Bound – What is a realistic completion time? If it is not realistic, you will likely not be successful in achieving your goals.
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Bible verses about God's Plan
One of my roles at work is to work as an event manager. What often causes me great anxiety with this role is when a client suddenly decides to spring a last minute change. Not a minor change but rather changes that requires re-working the event logistics. Changes bring with it a level of discomfort and anxiety.
Its the same with life, we make big plans, we get married young, have your first child shortly after. Two years later, what should have been a happily ever after ends in heartbreak with the sudden death of your husband. What happens next when your goals suddenly don't align with God's plans for your life? While it can leave you questioning Why? We need to be mindful that the plans we have for our life, aren't necessarily the plans God has in store for us. Instead, he might be grooming us for a bigger purpose.
We should seek counsel from God and question his will for our lives when we go about setting goals. God's plans are way better than our plans. Ask Abraham and Sarah. They tried to help out God resulting in unnecessary hurt and jealousy. When God says no to our plans, although hard to hear, trust that he knows what's best for you and move forward with God's will for your life. He says that if we commit our ways to the Lord, he will establish our plans. Use these Bible verses about goal setting to set the stage for outlining your goals for the upcoming year.
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 NIV
We should put God first in all that we do. He knows what's best for us and will supply our needs accordingly.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV
We should submit our ways to God and he will stir us in the right direction.
“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” Proverbs 16:3 NIV
In all that we do, we should commit our ways to the Lord.
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21 NIV
Often times we can get so consumed with being busy making plans for the future that we fail to seek direction from God. All our plans should commence and end with seeking counsel from God. Just like with Joseph, God had a plan to use Joseph to save his people. Ultimately the plan God has for your life will prevail.
“May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” Psalm 20:4 NIV
I love this passage and view it as such a blessing. Psalms 20:4 is a lovely reminder that God can give us the desires of our hearts. Whether that may be a new house or a new car, he can make our plans succeed if it is his will.
“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers, they succeed.” Proverbs 15:22 NIV
As young adults, we often feel like we know it all but there is wisdom in seeking counsel especially from persons who are older or have already experienced what we are going through.
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31 NIV
If you trust in the Lord there is no limit to what you can accomplish through him. God promises to bless those who honor him.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21 NIV
Don't store up for yourself earthly treasures such as money. Instead, your focus should be on having a relationship with God.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
God has nothing but good plans in store for your life, he gives nothing but good gifts to his children.
“Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain.” Psalm 127:1 NIV
There is one consistent theme that runs through each of these Bible verses about plans, putting God first. When we put God first, He will give us the desires of our hearts and guess what? God only gives good gifts to his children. My prayer is that these verses will be a blessing to you as you go about setting goals for the new year. Be sure to also read about choosing a guiding word as you begin planning for 2019.
Which Bible verses about setting goals did you like best? Share them in the comments below! And don't forget about setting spiritual goals for the new year!
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