We all have desires in our lives.
- I desire to be a good husband
- To be a good father to my children (when we have them)
- To see my wife walk in all God has for her
- To equip people to walk in who they are in Christ
- To set people free from the bondage of religion
The danger I’ve found is when we treat our desires like goals.
Sometimes these can be great goals… For example my desire to be a great husband translates fantastically into a goal.
But my desire to see my wife walk in all God has for her… That can’t be a goal.
Because I’m not in charge of my wife.
I can’t make her do anything… That’s her decision.
And just as I make my fair share of decisions she wouldn’t have thought were best for me, I’m sure she may make some similar decisions in her life too.
Determining your responsibility
You see you aren’t ultimately responsible for other people, no matter how deep the relationship.
Pastor’s – You aren’t responsible for keeping your congregation from sinning.
Wive’s – You aren’t responsible for your husbands anger issue.
Father’s – You aren’t responsible for your son’s choice to no longer be a Christian.
Now don’t misunderstand me. We should do everything we can in our lives to help those close to us to make great decisions.
I’m simply saying at the end of the day, we can’t make people’s choices for them and we can’t take their choices upon our own shoulders.
Back to our examples
To save us from burnout we have to translate our desires into goals.
Desires are the things we hope for.
Goals are the things we are responsible for that increase the likelihood of that desire becoming a reality.
As I said before – sometimes they might be the same thing. But if we mess this up – burnout.
So going back to our examples above these might be some of the goals those people could set…
- I’m going to equip people as best I can in their beliefs
- I’m going to demonstrate walking with Christ to the best of my abilities
- I’m going to empower those around me to make decisions and give them freedom to make make those decisions – or not
- I’m going to be the best wife I can be
- I’m going to love my husband no matter what
- I’m not going to personally facilitate his bad decisions but I’m not going to try and control him
- I’m going to share my views and let him know how his decisions are effecting me and others
- I’m going to be a great father
- I’m going to focus on loving my son
- I’m going to talk to him about the goodness of God and share amazing testimonies of what God has done in my life
- I’m going to put people in his life that will show him the goodness of God
- I’m going to give him the freedom to make his own decisions
Here’s the key:
We do all we can to see our desires fulfilled, but our goals are exactly that… They are ours.
You can’t have a goal to have a “godly family”.
Because like it or not your family might decide to live a life you don’t deem “godly”.
That’s their choice.
Your goal has to be to be a godly parent, wife/husband, love unconditionally and show them the goodness of god in your life.
You can only control you.
My challenge to you is – where are you mixing up desires and goals in your life?
Because every area you have done so will require you to control others in order for you to have peace, joy and success.
What needs to change?