I’ve always been a lists and goals girl. My excitement in every “new” start, whether the beginning of summer, a new school year, or a new calendar year, is the movement toward my goals for those segments of time.
So a few days ago, as I stood on the precipice of 2024 looking ahead, it was a bit unnerving to me to realize that I had no goals for the new year. None.
Oh, I have ideas.
I have dreams and desires.
But I don’t have any concrete goals.
This concerned me a bit. I asked myself many questions, things like “Have I gotten lazy?” “Am I burned out?” And even “am I depressed?”
But the more I thought and prayed about this odd turn of events, the more I felt the Lord telling me to rest in it. To trust Him to bring about what He desires in the way He desires it. Because if 2023 taught me anything, it’s that I have no control over things anyway.
Yes, I can write. And I will. But frankly, I’m ready for a less stressful year which, for me, means a day-by-day obedience to the direction of the Holy Spirit instead of goals I’m charging toward and trying to make happen. I have no energy for the frustration of life getting in the way of those goals.
I think God asks different things from us in different seasons. He’s often asked me to work toward goals, to trust Him to make the time and energy for their pursuit. But this year I sense Him moving me in the opposite direction, asking me to work hard without a concrete goal, to trust Him for the outcome of my discipline and obedience.
A few years ago I read Dallas Willard’s book Life Without Lack. It’s about trusting the truth of Psalm 23:1: the Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
Last year, circumstances forced me to that place of trust. This year, I’d like to willingly embrace it.
Which season are you in for 2024—setting goals and being disciplined or living each day and trusting Him with the outcome?