How To Actually Reach Your Goals

This IS IT! This is the magic sauce you’ve been looking for. This is the system guaranteed to bring your goals from fantasy to reality. Well, ok maybe not. I hope you know by now that there is no substitution for good old fashion hard work. However, I have today a couple of tips that I believe will be key in your daily pursuit of your goals, personal growth and spiritual growth.


Most people never have any chance of reaching their goals because they never get crystal clear on what they’re trying to accomplish. Sure, many people make goals, but many times they are vague and unmeasurable

“I want to get in shape.”

A great end goal, but if that’s as clear as you get then you aren’t likely to do anything about it. Clarify what that means. Losing weight? Gaining muscle? Getting your heart healthy? How will you go about it? Eating healthier? Working out? When will you do those things?

A more clear goal might look like, I’m going go jogging every Monday and Thursday morning for 45 minutes.

A clear goal focuses less on the end goal and more on the actions that will get you there.

Getting clear on your goal helps clarify how you will spend your time. You’ve just eliminated every other activity in the morning that isn’t spending 45 minutes jogging. (Although, I hope that prayer and devotion is still in your morning or day somewhere)

The question associated with clarity is, “What is the target I want to move toward?”


OK, so you know exactly what you’re moving toward. Now, it’s time to move toward it. Consistently, everyday, no exceptions. What step are you taking today to move toward your goal? Have you started yet?

There’s many reasons why we might wait to get started, for me I waited to create content on YouTube because I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to create and I didn’t have the equipment or the knowledge needed to create the quality I would like. At some point I realized that if I just started it would create the motivation needed to improve, to aquire the skills and equipment needed to get better. Even now, I’m not “happy” with my studio, but I’m creating content and moving forward, everyday.

You don’t have to be perfect at it to get started. Just begin and consistently move toward your goal. One step each day. We have to ask the question: Am I consistently moving forward?

Consistency matters because when it comes to reaching goals progress is NOT static. You don’t just stay in place when you stop. Overtime we naturally pivot either to an alternative goal or in the case of actually stopping, we usually drift backwards. So, we consistently move forward and when we find we are drifting we look to the third key.


Knowing our tendency to drift we have to be willing to make contingencies along the way. These are small changes to adjust our course. As I gain knowledge, I realize some of what I’m doing isn’t going to take me toward my goal. My strategy and how I use my time must shift. The closer we zero in our what target we are reaching the more we must shift to get rid of or shift activities that don’t take us toward that specific goal.

When I started making content, I thought I would just create videos and take about movies or things I’m interested in. It didn’t take me long to realize that’s incompatible with my goals as a person. I want to inspire hope, encourage consistency and motivate people toward life change.

Ask yourself today: What small changes do I need to make to keep consistently moving toward my target.

I am convinced, no matter what your goal is, if you get crystal clear on what it is, move consistently toward it and make small changes along the way, you will get there. So keep on going!

Thanks for reading! If you’re interested in more check out this video I made on the subject. Have a blessed day!

Maintaining Daily Discipline (When You’re Not Feeling It)

Proverbs 24:30-34 (NLT) I walked by the field of a lazy person  the vineyard of one with no common sense. I saw that it was overgrown with nettles. It was covered with weeds, and its walls were broken down. Then, as I looked and thought about it, I learned this lesson: A little extra sleep, a little more slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— 34 then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.

I love mornings! I know some of you read that and roll your eyes because you’re not a morning person. How about I even the score and let you know that some mornings are terrible.  Some mornings I lack motivation. I don’t want to do any of the things I normally do in order to be healthy. The things that help me grow and maintain spiritual, mental and emotional health. On such mornings there’s three things I try to remind myself of…

ONE: Life change happens through consistency.

Growth is not some rapid event in our lives. It happens slowly over time as we are consistent to do the things needed to grow. As we consistently study, pray, workout, invest in healthy relationships growth happens. Not immediately because growth is slow.

When I was a kid I tried to plant a plumb seed in my back yard. I was gonna grow me some plumbs and I Was excited. I watered and tried for several days to grow that seed into a beautiful plant. Nothing happened. So I gave up. Too often we give up because we can’t see the growth that is happening beneath the surface. Growth takes time and visible results don’t burst from the ground right away. It can take weeks, months and even years or faithfully and consistently choosing to do the the right things before you really see the fruit of your labor.

So when motivation is lacking remember that consistency is key and get started!

TWO: Movement changes your mindset . 

We don’t feel any motivation so many times we never get started. However, when we push through and get started, even if we a slow starting out something happens as we move. Our mindset begins to change. Many times I don’t feel like doing my morning jog. Admittedly, it’s more of a brisk walk, but lying to myself and. calling it a jog feels like I’m wokring harder. Some mornings are ROUGH and I start off SO slow and sluggish, but I’ve learned that a bad workout is better than no work out. 

On days like that I’ve found something interesting. I almost always finish faster than I started. My body kicks into gear as I move and even though I lacked the momentum to begin, I somehow find the momentum along the way and pick up speed. As we get started we learn that movement creates momentum. Don’t wait for the motivation or to feel it just get started because…

THREE: If you don’t start you’ll never finish.

This year several things happened that reminded me how much I enjoy creating content. I love the process of filming, editing and creating content that (hopefully) inspires people in their daily pursuit. When I started, I didn’t have a clearly defined focus. I actually thought I would just talk about movies and things that interested me and work in a little hope along the way. However, once I got started I quickly realized that my focus needed to be a little more than that and I leaned in. I didn’t have it all figured out, (and I still don’t) but I started anyway. If I hadn’t made that first video about movies then I never would have made the videos that followed, including the one below that inspired this blog.

Too often, we want to have it all figured out and know exactly how it will turn out before we take that first step. Unfortunately, that isn’t how life works. To get the results you want, it will require a lot of learning along the way and if you never start, you’ll never get to where you want to go.

Even if you don’t make it to the finish line today, you’ll be a lot farther along than if you never started.


Thanks for reading. This is the third video I made for my youtube channel. It is the first one I made after deciding I wanted to more clearly focus on motivating people in their daily pursuit, much like this blog. I hope this inspires you to continue digging in to the daily pursuit of Jesus as well as whatever goals your chasing after today.

When You’re Low On Hope

Not too long ago I had a moment where I felt hopeless. I hadn’t been sleeping well– a problem that seems to recur from time to time. The problem of a lack of sleep is it robs my mind of clarity and perspective. My thoughts travel paths they would otherwise resist.

That morning, I awoke after only four hours of sleep and I knew it would be hours before sleep would find my eyes again. So I decided to go ahead and have my morning devotion- in the middle of the night. After I finished my Bible reading I tried praying. I had no words, only emotion. After days of lacking sleep, my mind was in no place to pray.

I was angry, despairing, hopeless. As the music played, “it is well” I shouted back, “It is NOT WELL!” Then I skipped the song and grabbed my journal. I may not be able to pray like I normally would, but I still had some words for God. I wrote my complaints, my feelings of insignificance, my anger at not sleeping. I filled page after page alternating between my anger and pleading with the Lord to shift my perspective, to grant me peace, to allow me sleep. I wrote how I felt certain I had no value and asking Him to show me I’m wrong. I ended my journal session with no resolve.

I try not to settle into a specific pattern during my prayer and devotion time, but lately, it’s been starting with scripture, turning to prayer and then journaling about the scriptures I highlighted. It was when I reread that days highlights that the voice of the Lord broke through.

When I started my devotion none of those feeling were on the surface, so I wasn’t reading the scripture exactly as I was now, but I had still highlighted it.

1 Chronicles 28:20 (NLT)Then David continued, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Don’t be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. He will see to it that all the work related to the Temple of the Lord is finished correctly.

I know that this scripture is David talking to His son Solomon, detailing him specific plans in building the temple of the Lord. However, in that moment for me, it shouted into the depths. It was as if the Father was speaking to my hopelessness assuring me that He was still with me. To keep doing the work He’s placed in front of me. I may not be seeing the fruit, but if I as I’m faithful to plow God will be faithful to produce. Then I thought of the work God is doing within myself as I read, “He will see to it that all the work related to the temple of the Lord is finished correctly.”

I was reminded that I am apart of the temple of God and He is working in me.

Philippians 1:6 (NLT)And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

I can have confidence that even though I’m having a moment, God doesn’t give up on His children. Even though I’m in the midst of an emotional rant, that is far from accurately reflecting reality, God patiently sits with me and doesn’t discount me.

Why do I share all of this today? Because the reality is we all from time to time have moments when we feel low on hope. We have a choice to make in that moment. For one, we can feed into those feelings and run from God, turning to other sources of comfort and reassurance. That’s the easier choice. When I’m angry at God I don’t particularly want to talk to Him. The second choice is to engage those feelings and bring them to the Lord. We don’t have to hide anything from Him. He is not caught off guard or offended. If I hadn’t brought those feelings to the Lord, I wouldn’t have been able to breakthrough to hear His voice.

I’m not saying that this is a perfect solution and that every time you do this you’ll have a breakthrough moment. Some seasons God allows us to walk through for purposes we don’t yet understand. However, I am saying that we can be confident we are not walking alone. Allow God to walk through it with you, even though it feels messy and not very Christian like.

After all, what’s more Christian: Keeping God at a distance because you’re angry or to let Him into your mess to do what only He can do?

Thank so much for reading, if you enjoyed this devotino then you may also enjoy the video I made on this same subject.

How To Disagree Well

Our aim is to be a united body of Christ. One body on one mission, to build the Kingdom of God. Of course, the problem is that life will never be without conflict and we will never be free of disagreements. Even in the book of Acts we see several disagreements. So the question is how do we keep disagreements from turning into disunity? We have to disagree well.

This seems a lost art in todays politically charged climate. We do NOT disagree well or even really discuss issues well. More often than not I see immediate angry responses to things that don’t even properly reflect the others belief. The media hypes up and distorts the beliefs of the opposing side so that when we interact with people who have those beliefs we don’t understand what they really believe, but we think we do.

The church should not be a reflection of the world. We have to do better. We have to learn how to have propper discourse, to understand each others perspectives and be okay with disagreement from time to time. There are areas where it is okay to haver differing opinions.

Today, I have a couple of tips to help navigate these conversations.

First, take an interest in what they have to say and really listen. I’m not talking about the kind of listening that involves nodding politely while caluculating your next argument. I’m talking about genuinly listening with the intent to learn and understand their point of view. Start with a question like, “Why do you believe what you believe?” Then be quiet and listen, ask follow up questions until you can really understand what they believe and why.

This accomplishes two things. One, likely you will come to see that their perspective is legitimate, even though you may not come to agree. Two, as you patiently listen to them they will almost always take the time to listen to you in return.

Next we need to evaluate the disagreement. Is what they believe against scripture or harmful in some way? If it is not then perhaps the best thing to do is to let it go. If it is, then we need to let them know, in love. Yes, this is where we should attempt loving correction. They may still be unwilling to change their perspective, in which case you may need to take it to a higher authority to determine what should be done. It may still be wise to let it go, but that wildly depends on how harmful or unscriptural we’re talking here.

I do know this: Every person is worthy of kindness. Even if you don’t know them personally, hello social media, they are still valuable and worthy to be listened to. Now if you’re trying to engage in civil discourse and they simply refuse, you’ve done your part and can move on from the conversation knowing you tried. 

Disagreement does not have to disrupt unity. We need to make allowances for each others faults, even perceived faults and trust that others will do the same for us. We need to see a unified body of Christ more than we need to win arguments. Let’s put each other above our pride. Let’s put the Kingdom above our own interests. Let’s learn to disagree well.

Romans 12:18 (NLT)  If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.

An Undivided Church

1 Corinthians 1:10 (NLT) I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.

As I read those words, Paul’s plead with the church to live in harmony, to have no divisions. I found myself grieved. His heart was for the church to be of one mind, united in thought and purpose. When we look at the church today and compare it to those words I can’t help but cry out, “Oh God, what have we done?” We are far from united.

A quick google search indicates that there are over 1200 Christian denominations worldwide and I don’t find it too difficult to believe that. Even if that is false and there were only 30 denominations, would that make it better? It depends. Differing denominations don’t necessarily mean division, but many times it does. Certainly, the origin of many denominations was a disagreement so sharp that it was decided we can’t be associated with you anymore and thus disagreement turned to division.

Another verse that grieves me is 1 Corinthians 4:20.

1 Corinthians 4:20 (NLT) For the Kingdom of God is not just a lot of talk; it is living by God’s power.

I suppose this verse should be exciting. Yes! The Kingdom God is living by God’s power, except that when I look at the average church I don’t see power. In fact, I see a lot of talk which indicates to me that we are not effectively building the Kingdom of God so much as, well, buildings.

I believe that the reason is, in part, a lack of unity across the body of Christ.

1 Corinthians 1:30 (NLT) God has united you with Christ Jesus…

1 Corinthians 3:6-8 (NLT) I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work

We are meant to united with God and each other. Working together to be the body of Christ and accomplish the purpose of Christ. We work TOGETHER to accomplish the purpose of God. Yes, only God can produce the fruit, but if we fail to do our part and instead engage in arguments and divisions we effectively halt the mission of God.

1 Corinthians 3:16 (NLT) Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you.

We together are the temple and His Spirit lives in us. This is another scripture that I have often heard individualized. While I do believe Christ lives in me, it’s important to recognize that I alone am not the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27) and cannot function effectively to fulfill God’s purpose by myself. When we come together in unity His Spirit takes up residence. When we come together in unity God’s power is unleashed in our very lives.

It’s time for some self evaluation. Where do you see disunity and division in your local community? Start with yourself, your circle, and move outward. How can you help bring wholeness to divisions? God’s purposes and Spirit are more important than our disagreements. We must come together and disagree well.

More on that in Thursday’s post.

Preparing for a Move of the Spirit | 03 Pray & Act

We’ve talked about a couple of aspects so far that I believe are imporetant if we’re preparing for a move of the Spirit. Examining our motives and removing obstacles. Today we’re going to look at two more. These may seem a little contradictory. They’re not. Let’s take them one at a time.


Prayer is vitally important to a move of God because when we pray we are yieleding our preferred path, our preferences and asking for the Lord to come and do what only He can do. Nothing is so important. We could never conjure, manifiest or manipulate a genuine move of His Spirit. So we must come together and pray. There is still value in waiting before the Lord. We tend to be in a hurry. We live in a busy world, when we have prayer time, perhaps it’s IF we have prayer time, it is often fit into our schedule at our conveinence rather than prayer being a priority and defining our schedule. Often our “Jesus time” is fit into tight structures and timeframes. We’ll read the scripture quickly, and pray for a few needs and then move on with our day. I do believe any time is better than no time, but quality time is better than measured time. Quality time is not determined, by length but by substance. When you spend time with the Lord are you really present? Is your focus completely on Him? Are you fully surrendered to His purpose? From time to time there is value in simply lingering in His presence, waiting with no agenda other than to be with Him. When must prioritize His presence over our agenda. There is power when people who are surrendered and yielded to His purposes begin to pray for a move of His Spirit.


I believe the final step in our preparatino process is to act. I know I just said we should wait, linger and pray for Him to move. No action we take can cause God to do something. We should wait in His presence, but let’s be active in our waiting. Let us do what Jesus taught us to do as we engage with the world around us. Let’s love the people that cross our path. Let’s meet needs in the lives of those we can. Be about the Father’s business. Give Him the opportunity to move through you in your world. I truly believe that God wants to move through your life more than in your church service. Sometimes I wonder if we want God to move in our services more than we want Him move in our community. God gives power for His purposes. If we are not a people about the purposes of God then what do we need His power for? When we partner with His Spirit, follow His leading and have the confidence to engage our world, we give Him and opportunity to demonstrate His power. When we ask people if we can pray with them, we give God the opportunity to respond.


We should often examine ourselves. Are our motivations genuinely aligned with the Lords? Are we are fully surrendered to His purposes rather than our own? Have we removed any and all obstacles that could disrupt the flow of His Spirit? If so then we must begin to pray, really pray for God to move. Finally we must step out in faith and give Him the opportunity to do just that. When we seek for His power to accomplish His purposes, we will not be disappointed. God is wanting to pour out His Spirit in this world, but I don’t belive He is looking to repeat Himself. As our culture is so rapidly and radically changing, we must stop expecting the next great move of His Spirit to take place in our church buildings. We must get out into our world and truly be about building the Kingdom of God rather than the Kingdom of the American church. My final challenge to all of us is simply to lay down expectations and allow God to do what only He can do.

Preparing for a Move of the Spirit | 02 Remove the Obstacles

Desiring a move of the Spirit is not enough. God is looking for a heart fully surrendered to Him. Once we’ve examined our motives and sought to align our hearts and expectations with Him we need to further examine ourselves for any and all obstacles that could prevent us from receiving from the Lord.

Remove the obstacles

I’ve often heard the Spirit’s move compared to the rushing water of a river. Well, God is looking for a vessel through which He can freely flow, unobstructed. There are many things that could obstruct the flow.  Removing the obstacles speaks to purity.
Matthew 5:8 (NLT) God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.
2 Timothy 2:20-21 (NLT) In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. 21 If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.
Joshua 3:5 (NLT) Then Joshua told the people, “Purify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do great wonders among you.”
To be pure is to be unmingled with the world, set apart for God’s use and God’s use alone. This requires a preparation process in our hearts. Where have we allowed obstructions? If we are expecting God to move then now is the time to honestly take a look and remove anything and everything that could obstruct the flow of God’s Spirit. There are many things that could cause an obstruction, I’ve narrowed it down to a few of the most common categories; sin, offense/disunity, distraction, focus on self, critical sprit/cynicism.

1. Sin

This is obvious, but sin can be sneaky. If we aren’t vigilant we can allow small things into our hearts without even realizing it. We know that sin separates us from God, so it isn’t a surprise to say that if we are allowing sin to take root in our lives that it will be a hindrance to what God is wanting to accomplish. At its simplest definition, I would define sin as anything that would hurt someone or yourself. That can take many forms. There are addictive sins, the ones we turn to over and over again that usually are harmful to ourselves and eventually very harmful to those closest to us. There are actions we can take against someone else, either by being unkind or even intentionally malicious. Then there are the things we should be doing, but choose not to do, like when we disobey God by ignoring the prompting to go and pray with someone. Some sins are big and obvious, some are small and seemingly insignificant. All sin needs to be removed. I think the smaller sins are the most dangerous because they don’t require a lot of intentionality, they are usually are natural inclination. This is why we must be vigilant to daily surrender our lives in pursuit of Jesus. 2. Offense/disunity This one is possibly the most dangerous on this list and incredibly relevant in todays world. People are more divided than ever and in the church, it’s incredibly easy to let offense take root in our lives. Sometimes one wrong comment or look, which may have been completely meaningless, is enough to raise the ugly monster of offense. The enemy wants us to be a hot mess of disunity. People who are divided cannot accomplish the work of God’s Kingdom effectively. We must put aside our offenses, be quick to forgive, and come together for God’s purposes. It is truly loving to overlook offenses.

3. Distraction

Our attention span is shrinking. The latest studies suggest that we now have an average attention span of 7 seconds. That’s less than a goldfish, people! It is certainly easy to allow other interests to take our minds and focus away from pursuing God’s purposes. We live in an ADD world of entertainment, there’s tons of it! I love it too. I don’t think it’s wrong to be entertained, but if our quest to quelch boredom prevents us from pursuing all God has for us then it becomes sin. There’s plenty of other things that could distract us as well, politics, drama, celebrity gossip– anything that fills our mind and consumes our talk could become a distraction and an obstacle to God pouring out His Spirit. There are times when we need to stay focused and allow God to work in our lives. There will be mornings when we need to hold off starting our day and just sit in God’s presence. There will be services where we need to put off our rush to leave and be patient, focusing on the Lord and prioritizing His presence.

4. Focus on the Self

We’ve already talked about our motivation, is it to have a powerful service, or is it to fulfill the purposes of God? Revival isn’t about you. If my primary focus is what I will get out of it, what I will experience, what I want, then I am missing something very important. God promises to pour out His Spirit on His people, on nations. I don’t see anywhere that tells me it’s for me individually. I believe our focus should be on how a move of His Spirit would benefit not only our church but our city, our nation, our neighbor. Will I benefit individually? Yes, but if that is my motivation and I give no thought to those around me then the focus on myself becomes an obstacle to the move of His Spirit.

5. Critical spirit/cynicism

Let’s be honest, when God moves sometimes weird things happen. I’ll be the first to tell you that I don’t like weird. I do believe that we can serve Jesus and not be weird. Sometimes we over-spiritualize things like prophecy to the point that I have to wonder if they can have any real impact to those who don’t know Jesus. It’s easy to be critical of things that we don’t understand. It’s easy to become cynical about many many things. If God showed up in a way that seemed foreign, or you didn’t know what was happening, or if things seemed a little weird, would you criticize it? If we’re not careful we can critique what God does to the point that He can’t do anything in our lives. I don’t like to admit it, but God can use weird to transform lives. Of course, sometimes weird is just weird. We must discern the difference if we hope to see God move. I believe if we examine our motivations and begin to remove these obstacles we are positioning ourselves to be receptors when God pours out His Spirit. Of course, ultimately only God can pour out His Spirit. We can, however, pray and be ready when He does. We’ll talk more about that Thursday, in the third and final part of this series.

Preparing for a Move of the Spirit | 01 Motives & Expectations

The power of God is difficult to explain. How do you describe something that is so completely beyond you? I grew up in an atmosphere that was full of His power. You could sense it in the air, but also see it in the fruit that was produced. Lives were transformed, people came to Jesus. Since then no matter what church I’ve been at, people talk about revival, longing for a move of the Spirit.

Of course, not everyone means exactly the same thing when they use those words. Our definitions are colored through the lens of our experience. Some have grown up hearing the words without ever experiencing it. At times there are certain services where it’s like God is breathing into them and those who long for His moving lean in and whisper, “this is it.”

It wasn’t. 

What will it take? When will we experience a move of the Spirit? There isn’t exactly a magic formula we can concoct. We can’t force God’s hand. God will move, in His timing and in His way. Still, I want to share four key steps I believe we must take if we want to experience a move of the Spirit. Examine your motives, remove obstacles, pray, and act.

Examine your motives

Our WHY is such an important factor in everything we do in life. Why do we want a “move of the spirit”. The way some people talk makes me feel like they are mostly concerned with having a powerful church service. I’m not against a powerful church service, but is that why I want the spirit to move? Am I more interested in an electrically charged environment than building His Kingdom?

I believe that God will not send the Spirit among a people who are not about the purposes of the Spirit. That is to say God sends His power for His purposes. If our goal is to experience great power, but never do anything to impact our community for His Kingdom then our desires are misaligned. 

I think another area where our motivations occasionally miss the mark is in our expectations. Sometimes when we say we want to experience a move of God what we are really saying is we want to recapture something from our past. What if what God is wanting to accomplish today looks differently, feels differently, functions differently? Are we willing to lay down our expectations and follow where He leads?

Personally, I have long believed that what is coming, will be very different than what has been done. I don’t believe the next great move of God will be central to one location, but take place in the common areas, unexpected areas. I think we need to move away from trying to cultivate an atmosphere that draws people to us and take the power of God to where the people already are.

I often wonder, what is it we are really hoping for? When we pray for revival what is it you want to see? I hope that our heart’s desire is to see God accomplish His purpose in whatever manner He desires. I pray we will be a people who will follow wherever He leads and put His Kingdom over our own comfort. (Luke 9:57-58)

I believe if our motives and expectations line up with His then we are so much less likely to be disappointed when it doesn’t “happen.” 

We will continue our preparation for a move of the Spirit with “remove the obstacles” in the next post.