Thursday, October 27, 2016

Six Areas We Need To Dream About — Part 2

“Everybody ends up somewhere in life. A few people end up somewhere on purpose.” —Andy Stanley

In my last post I covered the first two aspects or areas of my life that are critically important to me. Here are four additional areas I think and dream about regularly. 

  • My Career
I’m a pastor. I love what I do. I mean LOVE IT! Here’s the dream statement I’m using right now for what I hope to accomplish as a pastor.

I want to faithfully lead a2 Church into becoming a thriving, growing, “Acts 2” biblically functioning community of believers, where…

-worship is passionate,

-relationships are authentic, growing and life-giving,

-outreach is taking place on a daily basis as people share their faith and invite people to join them at a2,

-God’s truth is communicated in fresh, relevant ways through the use of all the arts, and a2 itself becomes a leader in fanning into flames the creative gifts of all artists

-people experience life change and total transformation as they apply God’s Word to their lives, grow in their relationship with the Jesus and do life in a small group,

-develop a campus that is “state of the art,” yet functional and includes worship space that lends itself to theatrical productions, a children’s and student ministry center, classrooms, a counseling center and office space beautifully situated on the property God has given us…

-we are committed to supporting career missionaries, sending out hundreds of participants on short-term missions trips and launching at least one new church plant every year…

Okay, that's longer than two or three sentences... I’ll keep tweaking it, but reading and reviewing it on a regular basis keeps me focused on what I'm attempting to accomplish.

  • Financial Freedom
Here’s my dream statement regarding our finances:

Live in financial freedom by honoring God with His tithe, excelling in generosity, being completely debt free, and leaving a legacy for our children and grand children.

Janet and I have a long way to go on this one, but we’re making progress.

  • Physical Health
I believe the way we treat our body is a matter of stewardship. Our body is a gift from God. What we eat, whether or not we exercise, making certain we get an adequate amount of sleep, and taking a day off every week, all of this matters.

So, here’s the dream statement I’ve written regarding my health:

To honor God with my physical body by pursuing a healthy diet, exercising six times a week, and developing good sleep habits. I also want to honor God, refresh my body and mind, and refuel my spirit by taking off one day every week. 

That's a pretty simple, concise and doable statement. 

The decisions I make today about my health will have repercussions tomorrow. If I continually neglect my physical health I'm potentially creating significant burdens and responsibility for my children and grandchildren. It’s my goal to enjoy life as long as I’m breathing. Living out this dream statement makes that possible.

  • Personal Growth
Finally, here’s my dream statement for personal growth.  

To pursue lifelong learning and personal growth by reading daily, listening to podcasts, attending growth conferences and developing relationships with people who challenge me to keeping growing.

Remember the old “United Negro College Fund” ad back in the 70’s? Probably not. But I do. It included this tag line: “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Thirty-five to forty years later, I still remember those ads. Wow! 

Here's what blows me away: every day a significant number of people are wasting their God-given mind and intellect on cheap “eye candy” and intellectual junk food. We're veggies out on hours of television, social media and a 24-hour news cycle, when we could be growing our mind and our spirit. I really believe we were made for more!

Make a decision today that you're going to keep growing until you stop breathing. Read books. Listen to podcasts. (Here's a list of the podcasts I regularly listen to.) Attend conferences. Join a small group or book club. A mind is still a terrible thing to waste.

A mind is a terrible thing to waste...

That’s it! Six areas I regularly think about and six statements that help define my life, dictate my calendar and hopefully determine my outcome.

Why not take time this week to write out a “dream statement” for the important areas of your life? Then, regularly review these statements.

It could change everything.

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