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plantingWe have been focusing lately on the key factors that are required to make one’s destiny a reality.  The last 2 blogs focused on the heart issues of dreams and desires. Our two blogs this week will look at getting our minds aligned with our hearts as we look at the roles of determination and devotion. We will finish up next week exploring drive (which most likely goes in a different direction than you are currently thinking it will go).

Dreams and desires are essential starting points for living out one’s destiny. We recently had a plot of land tilled for a garden. We bought seeds which have already begun to sprout in in-house planters. Funny thing about seeds, though. You can buy them at the store in those handy little pouches, you can have them on hand for a while, but as long as they remain in the pouches, they will always be just that — seeds. I can buy watermelon seeds with the dream and desire to have some fresh watermelon later in the season, but if I never actually get around to opening the pouch and planting the seeds, I will be eating the seeds at the end of the season rather than the fruit of my labor.

Many people have dreams and desires that they would like to fulfill, but they remain “seeds in the pouch” of their heart. In order for dreams and desires to become reality, there must be a call to action. Remaining in thedream/desire stages will never produce any fruitfulness in one’s life. There must be a determination to begin acting on those dreams and desires – thereby planting them in fertile soil – in order for them to blossom into their designed purpose.

Although this is not an exhaustive list, there appear to be 4 things that are vital for each of us to cultivate a healthy determination that will help us begin well at achieving our destiny:

1)      Goals. Set goals for yourself that will help you move closer to the desired end. Goals are like “shorter-term visions” that lead us to the dominant dream. Make sure that your goals are specific, measurable, achievable, related to your vision, and timely. Goals must be able to be gauged so we can evaluate our progress toward the mark.

2)      Strategy. Figure out how you can begin to meet your goals. Goals require a plan on how to achieve them. Goals without strategy are like a purpose without a plan. Every well-built structure begins with a set of blueprints, and a person’s life requires the same.

3)      Action Steps. This is the “roll-up-your-sleeves-and get dirty” stage. This is where all of the other things that we have done up to this point begin to get lived out. This is where we put our muscle where our mouth and mind are. It is the checklists and To-Do items that move us in the direction of our vision. Our action steps are governed by our strategy, which lead us toward our goals, which are backed by our desires which are motivated by our dreams.

4)      Commitment. Commitment is an absolute necessity. Without it, everything else is just dust in the wind. Referring back to the analogy in the last blog, if we have no commitment in running a race, we will either never leave the starting line, or at least never be able to finish when things get hard — and they will get hard, guaranteed. We will discuss more about that in the next blog on devotion.

How determined are you toward your success at living the dream? In which of the 4 stages (goals, strategy, action steps, commitment) do you need to focus more attention? What is the greatest drain on your determination? The greatest enhancer? We would love to hear from you.

About Tim

Timothy Golden is a husband and father of 3, pastor, teacher, coach and speaker. His passion is helping people grow deeper in their relationship with God and to overcome obstacles that keep them from pursuing their God-given dreams.