It is scientifically proven that those who write down their goals have an 80 percent higher chance of achieving them than those who don't. Those who regularly review their goals increase their chances of success even more. It's akin to a road—map—being able to consistently review your dreams and determine whether the way you spend your time is working toward them or against them. For the Christian, we know goals can be extremely helpful but only in the context of God's will for our life. How do we live in victory with our God-given dreams?
Those who live a guarded life may face their opportunities or dreams with a cynical attitude: I'll believe it when I see it. But what if we swapped that phrase around and instead said, "I'll see it when I believe it"? What would that do for our mind and heart as we strive to live in the things God has called us to?
Mark 9 tells us about when Jesus healed a boy with an unclean spirit. The boy was originally taken to Jesus' disciples, who were not able to cast out the demon. Jesus called that generation faithless, and as the boy was brought to Him for healing, the boy's father said, "If you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us" (v. 22, ESV, emphasis added). Jesus' reply here is telling: "'If you can'! All things are possible for one who believes" (v. 23, ESV). Jesus commanded the spirit to leave the boy's body and later told the disciples that "this kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer" (v. 29, ESV).
Let's apply this biblical truth to our own lives. How often do we strive, outside of God's power, to make our dreams come to fruition? To see change? We ask God for miracles, then we work and work and work to make it happen. We tire in the labor of striving. That's what the disciples did with the demon-possessed boy. They did not seek the strength of the Father through prayer; they tried what they thought was best—and failed.
We can either wait for life to plop everything we need in our laps and sit idly by (likely unsatisfied), or we can line our actions up with what Scripture tells us will always bring God's success: prayer. We know that faith without works is dead, so our duty in this life is to actively believe. As Matthew 21:22 says, "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer" (NIV). Here, believing means to align your heart with God, knowing His character and His Word so that whatever you are believing and praying for will naturally be within His will.
Through this active waiting—truly believing those promises God has laid on our heart—I am confident that we will then see His glory revealed in answered prayer. Make your goals, set your marks, regularly review them, but make sure you do it all through the lens of God's heart for you. We only want to see what God believes for us.
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