Goals & Distractions


Originally Posted by Mike Young June 2005

Do you ever feel like your life is full of distractions? There are times when I don’t feel like I accomplish much because of the distractions around me. Distractions are another strategy of the thief. He steals our productivity and effectiveness by placing a multitude of road blocks and interruptions in our way.

Often the distractions are so attractive they make us completely lose sight of worthy goals. 

“I’m convinced that the team with the fewest distractions will win!” That’s a line from a letter my football coach read to us at the beginning of homecoming week when I was a senior in high school. All around us homecoming spirit was brewing, conversations were filled with talk of the dance, spirit week competitions, float preparations, the bonfire and pep rallies. Coach knew, in that environment, teenage kids can easily become distracted from winning a ball game on Friday.

Although the context of my life is quite different now, the message of Coach’s warning is still appropriate. The man with the fewest distractions will prevail! But prevail at what? In the story above, the clear goal was to win a football game. Coach reminded us of two things, the goal and the distractions. Now my goals are different, I want to… be in God’s will, be a good husband,  lead my family well, raise my children to be solid adults, provide adequately for my family, meet financial and ministry goals… the list goes on. Unfortunately, for each of these desires, Satan has a multitude of stumbling blocks to place before me.

I’m sure you have experienced frustrations similar to mine. You start on a journey to accomplish something only to be sidetracked by some completely unexpected event.

How does one prevail in this constant battle? I think one key is to make sure that the goals we pursue are goals God has given us.

In my life, I have, at times, established goals that were mine alone and just didn’t involve God. That’s not what He wants. Often, these selfish goals themselves become distractions.

We need to follow Coach’s advice, make sure you know the goals and identify the distractions. Take time to consider your goals. Are your desires in sync with God’s desires for you? Do your goals for personal success distract you from significant objectives that might be more important to God? What distractions do you face? Satan will use any means necessary to keep you from walking in God’s will. How has he distracted you from praying, worshiping, serving, or leading just this week?

If you are seeking God’s will, he will fill you with the strength, endurance and concentration you will need to reach your goals. You will have the discipline and determination to hold your focus and not be distracted.

Consider these verses:

Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ. Philippians 3:13b-14

Therefore, …  let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1

Keep moving forward with your eyes on eternal not earthly goals, watching for distractions as you go.