Vision Board’s are a popular topic in the self development realm. The idea of seeing something you want to achieve every day keeps you focused and makes it more attainable.
The thing with most of the self development community is the absence of God and the reliance on self, so to some Christians there is an idea of goal setting and vision boards as a self idol. Tools that mean you are relying on self and not on God.
Today I want to share with you how I feel about that.
As Christians, we have to constantly be discerning if things our world tells us to do to be happy or successful or important, align with what the Bible says, and one step further, with how we feel the Holy Spirit is directing us.
So is it OK to make a vision board to help you accomplish your goals or to even set goals in the first place? Or do we just let go and let God?
One of the foundational aspects of the Bible is; we are born with choice. Choose Jesus or deny him. Choose our sinful nature or choose righteousness. Choose Heaven or choose Hell.
What isn’t in the Bible is a defined checklist as to how we are supposed to live our lives. There our guidelines and best practices and even commands to lead us to walking and living the way Jesus did. But there is no “to do” list to live the best life or the right life.
Our goal in life is not to be “the greatest, the best or the most right” that’s who God is and if we are striving to be that I think we have it all wrong. But we can be the best versions of ourselves – the person God designed us to be when we close out the noise from the world.
We are all born broken with a sinful nature. Does God want us to choose right and choose holiness and become more like Jesus? Yes absolutely! That’s why there are so many guidelines and commands in the Bible about Loving God more than anything, Loving others, serving others and sharing the gospel. But if our aim in life is to be “the best, the richest or always perfect/right” and if that was actually achievable there would be no need for grace and mercy.
This life here on earth is temporary and different for each and every one of us. The Bible has many verses about gaining wisdom from God. God has ultimate wisdom and knows everything and we as humans will never know it all. That’s where faith and surrender come in. But God wants to give us wisdom and we need to seek it! But how do we do that?
We all have different spiritual gifts and natural talents that are given to us to edify others. To build up the church, to strengthen our Christian character. But how do we figure out what they are?
and how do we know what the right actions are?
Insert goal planning and vision boards.
And this doesn’t mean we will get it right everytime, but God will open and close doors on our right path when we take initiative and take action
If your goals in life are to own fancy cars and 7 houses and a jet and have people admire you, then I think you have it all wrong. But if you are here and you resonate with the content I share I bet that isn’t you.
Maybe you have goals like, lose weight, get on top of your dishes, write a book, have a better marriage, be a better mom then I think you have got it 100% right (and if you want to be rich to give then I’m totally encouraging your get rich goals too).
The thing is when we have asked Christ into our hearts and lives, we are given a helper. The Holy Spirit. We need to partner with the Holy Spirit to find God’s direction and purpose for our lives. We all have a purpose. We certainly aren’t just meant to live on this earth accumulate stuff, watch netflix, pay bills and die. The biggest way to finding your purpose is action and I think to get a clear direction to really follow this verse
Mark 8:35 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it.
To me this verse speaks so much to just living a comfortable life.
Lose the comfort, that our world throws at you. Love God with all your heart, mind, strength and soul, serve others and you will find your life. You will find your purpose.
I have considered myself a Christ follower for 15 years now. But it has only been in the last 5 that I know what my purpose is, that I feel God has given me a clear direction and path to follow. How did I find that? I said no to comfort and became a foster parent.
We felt God calling us to adopt and to be involved in the foster care system but that first year, I felt more confused than ever. It was a huge adjustment. It was a huge discomfort in many ways. I had an emotional break down, I quit my job that I loved and started not loving it anymore, I lost friends and I gained a ton of weight and felt like someone I wasn’t.
But slowly and surely God started changing me. He gave me my purpose, He opened up doors, He gave me my third daughter, He gave me a business and a ministry and He gave me this beautiful, incredible dream that I once would have been too scared to even try let alone accomplish. (More coming on that in the future).
This all started by asking God for wisdom and direction. The first time I really felt called to something (like there is no way this isn’t what I am supposed to be doing) was when He said you are supposed to adopt.
James 1:27 was clearer then it had ever been that He wrote that verse for me.
Shortly before that calling. I don’t think I was growing spiritually. I was going to a church that honestly the preaching was over my head and I didn’t feel like I was learning and I certainly wasn’t doing enough on my own to get me there. I was frustrated with some things that to me, seemed legalistic and I blamed my lack of spiritual growth on the church and being a new mom.
For financial reasons and the fact I wanted to be home to raise my kids we moved to a new city. We found a new church we loved, we found Christian friends and both my husband and I really started growing in our walk with the Lord. That doesn’t mean we didn’t make mistakes and sin along the way but we both became on fire for Jesus.
I just threw that in there to say you need to take responsibility for your own spiritual growth and not blame it on a church and also to find a new one if that is what you feel God is calling you to.
Side note: no church is perfect, they all have their flaws, I’m not saying you need to leave at every little thing that bothers you because then you are making. it. about. you. and not God.
OK back to spiritual growth. This is when I first felt a strong calling from God. It all started with a goal I set to read the Bible regularly and to attend church faithfully. And praying for Christian friends at a similar life stage to do life with.
God started giving me more wisdom. He gave me a desire to learn the Bible and I saw it differently then “this is what I need to do because I am a Christian.”
If I don’t set goals for this one precious life, my life isn’t going to look very spiritual. It’s going to look a whole lot like netflix on the couch and milkshakes for dinner. It’s going to look like actions from entitlement and never doing hard things.
So YES, I think goal setting as a Christian is majorly important. As long as your goals align with the ultimate goal set out in the Bible as followers of Christ.
Mark 12: 30-31 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
Do your goals align with these two great commandments. Do your goals bring God glory and help others?
The Bible says God wants to give us the desires of our heart and when we are following Christ (not just saying we are) then the desires of our hearts or our goals are going to align with God’s.
So as you are setting goals ask yourself does this give God glory? Can I worship in the process of obtaining these goals, or is it going to pull me away from worship? Does it have eternal significance or impact?
Remember God has a plan and a purpose for your life. To bring Him Glory and to share the Gospel. You aren’t going to be perfect of this and he knows it. That’s why He gave us Jesus. Nothing you do is going to make Him stop loving you when you worship Him and repent of your sin when you’ve strayed.
We are created in His image and God is great so I think we are meant to do great things with our lives. That looks differently for each of us, as we are all different parts of the body of Christ.
God cares about the little things and the big things.
For example; Lose Weight
Don’t feel bad about setting a goal to lose weight, if losing weight is going to give you the confidence to step into the person God made you to be. If you are hiding behind the weight and not putting yourself out there to share the gospel or help others. If you want to lose weight because are not being a good mom because you are tired and unmotivated laying on the couch. Losing weight can make a major difference in how you show up in this world and impact the kingdom. Maybe you are overweight in the first place because you were following the world’s ideals of comfort? If your goal is to lose weight so you can try to impress people with your body on instagram then I would say your motives are wrong.
Where do you have unrest and lack of peace? What do you feel God keep whispering to you? This is where your goals should come from.
Who are you meant to be and what are you meant to be doing when you put all the other worldly distractions aside?
Align your goals with God, partner with the Holy Spirit and see the abundance and joy that will flow into your life.
And make your Vision Board or as I prefer to call it your “With God I will Board” and put it in a place you will see every day. Use it as a reminder to push away all the worldly distractions. Meditate on what you think God wants you to do. Visualize the accomplishment and worship God along the way. God will guide you. He will say yes or no. He will direct your path, but He can’t do that if you don’t start stepping forward.