What is Your Goal?

Pursuing Your Goals?

what are your goals

What Are Your Goals?

As an avid Ohio State Buckeyes fan I was delighted that “we” won the National Championship last Monday night against the University of Oregon. In a three game stretch the Buckeyes shutout the Wisconsin Badgers 56 – 0 in the Big Ten Championship; defeated the then #1 team in the nation, the University of Alabama, in the Sugar Bowl 42 – 35; and then defeated the Ducks 42 – 20. What impressed most people about this amazing finish to the Buckeye’s season was that they won all three games with their third string quarterback, Cardale Jones. The most impressive thing however was that these three games were not only the three biggest games of Cardale’s college career, they were the only games he had ever started for the Buckeyes. On the largest stages of collegiate athletics Cardale Jones not only won those games, but did so with such skill and poise that many thought he would forgo any further time in college to enter the pro football draft.

Cardale had said, “In my personal opinion, I’m not ready for that level.” But as is the case with many young people when faced with the prospect of fame and fortune one’s judgment can become quickly blurred. It was announced (via his own twitter feed) on Thursday, the deadline by which Cardale had to declare whether or not he would make himself available for the NFL draft, that there would be a press conference that he would be announcing a “Life changing decision at 4pm.” This lead to a fury of speculation that the young quarterback was bolting for the NFL. My friend Terry wrote on Facebook that he seemed inevitable now that Cardale was leaving (As I write this I checked Terry’s Facebook page and his prognostication has since been deleted).

His decision? “My decision was very simple,” Jones said. “I’m gonna return next year for school.” WHAT?! How could you pass up all that fame and fortune? Cardale said he wanted to finish his education. And when the time came to play in the NFL, if it does come, he will be able to concentrate on the job at hand. “I want to make sure I meet all my goals,” Jones said. A more mature press conference I have never seen.

As Christians today, many become distracted by the fleeting rewards of this life. Many too quickly give up an eternal reward for the temporal fame and fortune of this life. Paul said, “Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ…I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:8 – 14).

This past week I was also inspired by two fine young Christian men who took a stand against worldliness and gave up roles in a school play that would have caused them to compromise their Christianity. Both are talented actors and singers and would certainly have been lauded for their performances, but at what cost? I am reminded of the Hebrew writer who spoke of Moses saying that he “refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward” (Hebrews 11:24 – 26).

The goal of every Christian, indeed every man, should be to live a life that is pleasing to God and which is rewarded with eternal life in heaven. I certainly want to be the best husband, father, friend, brother and neighbor that I can be. But I cannot be any of those things if I am not first, and foremost, the Christian God expects me to be (Ecclesiastes 12:13). My goal? I want to hear those sweet words of welcome, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord” (Matthew 25:21, 23). What is your goal?

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