It’s the third week of the third month of the slightly less than New Year. Do you have any audacious goals? These are not routine items to check off a to-do list. Audacious goals are grand. They float beyond our wildest dreams and take us along for the ride. Sure, they require tremendous confidence and boldness to start. But mine always take the grace of God to (start and) finish – especially when the ride gets rough.
au·da·cious \ȯ-ˈdā-shəs\: adjective very confident and daring : very bold and surprising or shocking
Fulfilling a mission to the masses or making an individual change requires bold steps — some may even call it guts. However, striving for improvement in our relationships, our resources, our health, or a project can make overwhelm seem like an understatement.
But audacious goals are possible when we consider the greatness of God.
The Apostle Paul knew overwhelm. He was chosen to take the Gospel message to the Gentiles, often in the face of tremendous opposition and danger. However, in light of God’s possibilities, Paul saw humility as a necessity. Even as he sought God to remove the hindrances to his goals, he penned these words from 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NLT):
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.
God’s grace is His gift to the undeserving and His power to the weak. Since this is an obvious opportunity “to boast about my weaknesses,” here’s a recurring one: I can usually find my missed goals underneath a stack of misplaced priorities. But I’ve also discovered the necessity of God’s mercy and grace as I seek to regroup.
I’m currently regrouping to:
- Paint my kitchen cabinets
- Plant an herb garden
- Publish my next book
These three tasks may not seem bold or shock you. But they each require a bit more bravado for me. To fuel my courage, I’ve envisioned each of these goals in their completed state.
My cabinet redo may not make a magazine cover, but it would make me much happier as I cook. The same goes for my future herb garden. It is waiting to shed its leaves and land in some new dish. And the cover of my next book has made several appearances in my head.
However, as I sought God regarding my appointments with the undone, I sensed Him encouraging me with a truth from James 2:26. I’ve seen this divine memo before. This news flash is meant to transfer the joy of seeing a vision into a faith seen by my actions.
“Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works.” (NLT)
As I exercise my faith, grace is the confidence I need. It infuses my efforts with good aim and a good measure of audacity.
Are your goals an expression of what you want to do or an invitation to what only God can do in and through you? Our perspective makes a difference. When I strive towards perfection in my strength, it results in frustration. But surrendering my weakness to Christ’s strength, results in His glory. Then my goals become “awe-dacious.” They put the glory of God in clear view and I stand in awe of what He does.
As we consider what we’ll accomplish with the remainder of this year, here’s some good news: Audacious goals don’t just take guts; they also take the grace of God. Regardless of the pace or the pressure involved with a task, I’m praying we’ll become more acquainted with His power. May our goals speak well of Him and may we continue to receive His hope for the heart and joy to the soul.
“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 3:14 NIV