by Joel Lawler
Have you ever attempted to start a project without a design or goal in mind? If you have, how did it turn out?
I enjoy painting. I have tried several processes for creating a work of art. The first process was to begin with a blank canvas and just start painting.
This always leads to a waste of time, materials and effort. I have yet to be able to bring about a desirable outcome with the "flying by the seat of the pants method." Without a direction in mind, I pretty much get nowhere.
The second process that I have used is to plan everything out. Small sketches are created and pieced together until there is at least a rough drawing to work from. With an idea of what I hope to paint, there is a greater chance of satisfaction upon completion.
I once started a business with a friend. Our business plan was to "Have Fun and Make Money." We did neither and it ended up being quite a disaster.
The old saying "aim at nothing and you will hit it every time" has been proven out time and time again to be extremely valid.
My wife and I bought a one hundred year old house. It was in need of repair. One of the areas that desperately needed updating was the wiring. The basement ceiling looked like a giant spider-web of black tar coated wires that seemed to go nowhere and yet everywhere at the same time.
My father-in-law graciously volunteered to help me rewire our house. Motivated by pure love for his grandchildren and their safety, he walked me through the task of redoing the electrical in our house. Before we even bought an inch of cable, we sat down and drew up a plan. It was painfully obvious that the previous electrician had skipped this step.
With the plan that my father-in-law crafted, I was not only able to complete the task but also receive compliments from several home inspectors after reviewing my work. Without his plan, I doubt I would have lived to tell about this project.
Success is dictated by having the end result in mind. Setting and achieving goals is a timeless strategy that has transcended generations. By having a purpose and using it as a filter in our decision making process, it will no doubt lead to greater accomplishment.
This is common sense stuff. Yet most of us completely ignore this when it comes to our everyday lives.
For the most part, people live their lives in order to just make it another day. Out of pure survival, they stumble throughout their day. They have no idea what their purpose is and never stop to think about their motivation for continuing on.
Just as we have a beginning, we also have an end. Death awaits each and every one of us. With this fact looming, should we not stop and develop a plan for what it is that we hope to accomplish with the time that we have left?
God created us for a specific reason. We all have a unique design that God crafted for us. If we look to Him and trust in with all our heart and not lean on our own knowledge, He will make clear what it is that we were born to do.
With a God given plan for our "life-project", we will be able to complete our lives in such a way that brings joy to ourselves, others and our creator.