What are your aspirations? intentions? goals? objectives?
One thing the definition out of diction misses is purpose and what God says about it? We know that we are supposed to run to win the prize, right? We know that we are supposed to press on towards the goals God has called us to, right? Not for selfish gains, but align with the gifts, the talents, and the purpose God has called us to!
So, what the goal you seek? What is the prize you want to win?
Today’s reading from Philippians 3:7-8 starts with this direction…
7But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ 9and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— 10that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
–from Philippians 3
I extended the content to capture all that Paul said in this area. When we put first things first, it makes a difference! When we have our priorities straight, it impacts how all of our life works out! When you have the top priorities in place and live in alignment with them, the rest of the things tend to take care of themselves! Without the priority list and the desire to live in alignment, you can run into challenges and struggles you were never meant or needing to have to deal with! Imagine if your priorities were out of whack and your health suffered. Imagine if your priorities were out of what and your relationships suffered. How bad would it have to get before you stopped and re-evaluated? How deep would you have to go before you stopped and started looking up? I learned the hard way and found that by putting God first, my wife and our marriage second, my kids and family third, it made it so that everything else would get taken care too. God tells us this when we read in His Word “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
So we need to make sure we don’t have selfish ambitions. We need to make sure our ambitions are aligned with God’s plan and purpose for our lives! And do our best and trust Him for the rest!
The focus and the purpose is to know Jesus! The goal and purpose is to live lives that allow us to follow after Jesus in every part of our lives — from when we get up to when we go to sleep, from our time in church to our time at work — every part! There shouldn’t be different versions of us! I remember a friend asking me about why I post my blog on LinkedIn since that is a professional service not personal. I answered there is only one of me – not a work me and a non-work me. I asked didn’t I live this way in the office too? We should live lives that shine the glory of God into our environment! We should allow our behavior to speak to what our ambitions are! So if our ambitions are to follow and know Jesus, then every day the things we do, the things we say, the way we respond should align to that purpose and goal! And why? It’s not all about us remember, that is where not being self-centered is key! We need to concerned for others! We need to make sure we aren’t living by selfish ambitions! We will grow and develop in a way that will build up a passion for sharing the redemptive power of Jesus into the lives of those around us! The power of forgiveness thanks to Jesus who first gave His all so that we could be forgiven is a big key! Through Jesus we are forgiven and redeemed back to God! It’s not all about us! God has a greater calling! You didn’t find Paul after he had the revelation of Jesus holding onto it and keeping it to himself! He had to go out and share it! So what is driving you? How will your ambitions direct your steps? What difference will you make because of them?
Today is the start of a new devotional and it speaks into ambition and work this way…
Like Jesus, we are called to look not only to our own interests, but to the interests of others:
“Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” (Philippians 2:1-4)
–from Ambitions and Your Work
This subject is a 6 day devotional, so we will get to explore this for 5 more days.
So what drives your ambitions? Will you allow God to change it and help you to achieve everything He has planned for you?