Jesus said: “Your Heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need” (Matthew 6:32-33 NLT). “If you seek first the kingdom of wealth, you’ll worry over every dollar. Seek first the kingdom of health, and you’ll sweat every blemish and bump. Seek first the kingdom of popularity, and you’ll relive every conflict. Seek first the kingdom of safety, and you’ll jump at every crack of the twig. But seek first the Kingdom of God and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”

Max Lucado

Max Lucado, 2009, Fearless, Nashville Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, p.51

“The happiest people I know are those who are busy working toward specific objectives. The most bored and miserable people I know are those who are drifting along with no worthwhile objectives in mind.”

Zig Ziglar

“The greatest achievement was at first and for a time a dream. The oak sleeps in the acorn; the bird waits in the egg; and in the highest vision of the soul a waking angel stirs. Dreams are the seedlings of realities.”

James Allen

James Allen (1864-1912), quote from the book, As A Man Thinketh

Just For Today’ by Sibyl F. Partridge

1) Just for today I will be happy. This assumes that what Abraham Lincoln said is true, that “most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” Happiness is from within; it is not a matter of externals.

2) Just for today I will try to adjust myself to what is, and not try to adjust everything to my own desires. I will take my family, my business, and my luck as they come and fit myself to them.

3) Just for today I will take care of my body. I will exercise it, care for it, nourish it, not abuse it nor neglect it, so that it will be a perfect machine for my bidding.

4) Just for today I will try to strengthen my mind. I will learn something useful. I will not be a mental loafer. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration.

5) Just for today I will exercise my soul in three ways; I will do someone a good turn and not get found out. I will do at least two things I don’t want to do, as William James suggests, just for exercise.

6) Just for today I will be agreeable. I will look as well as I can, dress as becomingly as possible, talk low, act courteously, be liberal with praise, criticize not at all, nor find fault with anything and not try to regulate nor improve anyone.

7) Just for today I will try to live through this day only, not to tackle my whole life problems at once. I can do things for twelve hours that would appal me if I had to keep them up for a lifetime.

8) Just for today I will have a program. I will write down what I expect to do every hour. I may not follow it exactly, but I will have it. It will eliminate two pests, hurrying and indecision.

9) Just for today I will have a quiet half-hour all to myself and relax. In this half-hour sometimes I will think of God, so as to get a little more perspective into my life.

10) Just for today I will be unafraid, especially I will not be afraid to be happy, to enjoy what is beautiful, to love, and to believe that those I love, love me.

If you need further persuasion on the effects of goal setting, I’ve read of a study undertaken in 1953 at the Yale University in Connecticut, USA. – The study, to establish the effects of goal setting, was apparently performed on senior year students just prior to their graduation. It ascertained that 87% of the pupils had not carried out any form of goal setting exercise at all. 10% of the pupils had a general idea of what they wanted and had made some attempt to set themselves goals but only 3% of the graduating students had actually sat down and created a plan of action, a goal setting agenda. But the story doesn’t end there. In 1973, some twenty years later, the study was finally concluded and the results published. The study conclusively found that over the interim twenty year period, the 3% of students who had set themselves goals, had achieved far more, in terms of both professional and financial attainments, than all the other 97% put together! So you see goal setting really does work.

R. Ian Seymour

R. Ian Seymour, excerpt from Maximize Your Potential, Louisiana USA, Pelican Publishing, p.38

Leadership expert, John Maxwell says: “When you are trying to realise your dream, sometimes you’ll be surprised by which people want to light your fire and which ones want to put it out.” Here’s a humorous story to illustrate the point.

A particular migrating bird decided that it was too much trouble to fly south for the winter and decided he would brave the winter out, like a lot of other animals do. So as all the other birds flocked away towards warmer climes, he stayed behind and waited for winter.

By the end of November he was having serious second thoughts. He had never been so cold and he couldn’t find any food. Finally he realised that if he didn’t get out of there soon, he wasn’t go to make it. So he started to fly south all by himself. After a while it began to rain. And before he knew it the water was turning to ice on his wings. Struggling, he recognised that he couldn’t fly any longer. He knew he was about to die, so he glided down and made his last landing, crashing to the ground in a barnyard.

As he lay there stunned, a cow came by, stepped over him and dropped a plop right on him. He was totally disgusted. Here I am, he thought, freezing to death. I’m about to die. I’m on my last breath, and then this! What an awful way to go. So the bird held his breath and prepared himself to die. But after about two minutes, he discovered that a miracle was happening: He was warming up. The ice on his wings was melting. His muscles were thawing out. His blood was flowing again. He realised that he was going to make it after all. He got so excited and happy that he began to sing a glorious song.

At that moment, the farm’s old tomcat was lying in the hayloft in the barn, and he heard the bird singing. He couldn’t believe it; he hadn’t heard anything like it for months, and he said to himself, “Is that a bird? I thought they’d all gone south for the winter.” He came out of the barn, and lo and behold, there was the bird. The cat crossed over to where he was, pulled him gentle out of the cow plop, cleaned him off – and ate him!

There are three morals to this story: (1) Not everyone who drops a plop on you is your enemy; (2) not everyone who takes a plop off you is your friend; and (3) if someone does drop a plop on you, keep your mouth shut. The same can be said for you as you realise your dream. Some people you consider friends will fight your success. Others will support you in ways you didn’t expect. But no matter which people criticise you or how they do it, don’t let them take your focus off your dream.

Source: John Maxwell, The Success Journey, 1997, Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, p.37-39

“The tragedy in life is not in failing to realise one’s goals, but in failing to have goals to realise.”

attributed to Isaiah Mayes

Personal ambition and goals must not, in themselves, be our number one priority. – “Do nothing out of selfish ambition” (Philippians 2:3). We need to ask ourselves, whose kingdom am I trying to build – my own or God’s? Jesus, when talking about our need of the necessities in life, said, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33). Jesus went on to say, “What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” (Matthew 16:26 NIV)

“If a person’s aim in this world is right, he will miss fire in the next!”

John Mason

It is not wise to undertake a task or journey without making detailed plans, as the following tale demonstrates:

A man flying in a hot air balloon realized he was lost. Reducing altitude, he spotted a man on the ground and descended to shouting range.

“Excuse me,” he shouted, “can you help me? I promised my friend I would meet him a half hour ago, but I don’t know where I am.”

The man below responded, “You are in a hot air balloon, hovering approximately 30 feet above this field. You are between 40 and 42 degrees north latitude and between 58 and 60 degrees west longitude.”

“You must be an engineer,” responded the balloonist.

“I am,” replied the man. “How did you know?”

“Well,” said the balloonist, “everything you told me is technically correct, but I have no idea what to make of the information, and the fact is I am still lost.”

Whereupon, the man on the ground responded, “You must be a manager.”

“That I am,” replied the balloonist, “but how did you know?”

“Well,” said the engineer, “you don’t know where you are or where you are going. You have made a promise, which you have no idea how to keep, and you expect me to solve your problem. The fact is, you are in the exact same position you were in before we met, but now it is somehow my fault.”

“The word ‘goal’ should really be spelt ‘goall’ as a reminder that we must go-all out if we are to achieve them.”

R. Ian Seymour

Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance

The eight ‘P’ process for achievement:

Plan Purposefully

Prepare Prayerfully

Proceed Positively

Pursue Persistently

“Hold fast to your dreams, for if dreams die then life is like a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.”

Langston Hughes (1902-1967), poet

“Begin with the end in mind.”

Stephen R. Covey

“The world makes way for the man who knows where he is going.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Of course, there’s no guarantee that you will attain a goal, but there is a guarantee that you will never reach a goal that you don’t set or strive for.

The accomplished long distance swimmer, Florence Chadwick, was very much, a goal orientated person. Having already conquered the Straits of Gibraltar, Bosporus and Dardanelles, in 1950 Florence Chadwick became the first woman to swim the English Channel, in both directions! Immediately afterwards Florence Chadwick set her sights on a new goal, to replace the one she had just lost by winning it. This new goal, however, would be far more dangerous. Swimming a distance of some twenty-one miles (33 km) through the shark-infested waters of the Catalina Channel, from Catalina Island to Los Angeles in California.

The attempt was scheduled for the American Independence Day: the 4th July 1952. When the day finally arrived Chadwick entered the water from Catalina Island and began swimming towards the California coastline, which, unfortunately, was covered by dense fog. Hour after hour she swam on relentlessly through the icy-cold water. Several times the riflemen in the support boat had to frighten off the sharks. Florence Chadwick was in the water for almost sixteen hours before she gave up and asked to be pulled in to the boat. The elements had taken their toll – she was completely exhausted and frozen to the bone – but the thing that had made her quit was the fact that she couldn’t see the finishing line. The fog had so obscured her view and so completely demoralised her that it sapped her of the will to go on. Soon after being hauled out of the water, Chadwick was to be demoralised even further when it was discovered that she was only about half a mile (1km) away from shore!

Florence Chadwick was utterly devastated but nevertheless, she immediately set herself a new goal, a fresh target to give her renewed hope and the inspiration to continue. Just two months later she was back again for another attempt. Once again the coastline was covered in dense fog but this time she overcame the obstacle and won through. Not only was Florence Chadwick the first ever woman to swim the Catalina Channel, but she also broke the previous all-time speed record by some two hours!

If you want to succeed in the game of life you have to be constantly moving forward, always with a goal or target in mind. Like riding a bicycle; if you want to keep moving you’ve got to keep pedalling. So don’t ever stop setting new targets or and making plans. And whenever you succeed and achieve your goals, make sure that you set new ones to replace the ones you just lost by winning them.

R. Ian Seymour

R. Ian Seymour, Discover Your True Potential, chapter 3

In the American Civil War, a minister told US President Abraham Lincoln that he hoped God was on their side. Lincoln’s response was cutting, and biblical: “Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.” – Think about your day: your plans, hopes and ambitions for it… Think about your life: your plans, hopes and ambitions for it. – Are you asking God to be on your side, delivering all that you want your life to be? Or are you asking God to make sure you are on His side, whatever changes that means for your plans and hopes?

Explore Bible notes 8/1/2013

“Our plans miscarry because they have no aim. When a man does not know what harbour he is making for, no wind is the right wind!”

Seneca (4BC-65AD), Roman philosopher, statesman and dramatist.

If you fail to plan you are really planning to fail.

When professional athletes approach the finishing line, they don’t slow down; instead they search their reserves for that extra push and then race flat-out for the line. In fact, professional runners don’t stop when they reach the finishing line – they can’t, because they are running so fast they need time to slow down afterwards. Similarly, a martial arts expert doesn’t focus on the object he is going to break; instead he focuses past it. Likewise, when it comes to striving towards a goal, don’t stop at the finishing line. Instead, set yourself a new target, a new finishing line – a new goal to replace the one you just “lost” by winning it.

R. Ian Seymour

R. Ian Seymour, excerpt from Maximize Your Potential, Louisiana USA, Pelican Publishing, p.40

In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.

Proverbs 16:9 NIV

We seem to spend so much time talking to God about what we want from him, when the real issue is what He wants from us. Nowhere in the scriptures does God promise to give us what we want. Instead, God gives us what He wants.

Aim for the moon – even if you fall short you’ll probably still be up there with the stars.

“Many are the plans of a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’S purpose that prevails” (Proverbs 19:21 NIV). We are not in control of life’s circumstances or masters of our own destiny – God is. It is God’s purpose that prevails, not ours.

Things can only go according to plan if you have a plan. Consider the story of the lumberjack who increased his efforts to fell more trees. The lumberjack worked harder than he had ever done before but at the end of the day, it was his productivity that fell and not more trees. You see, although the lumberjack increased his efforts, although he threw himself into his task and persisted in his toil all day long, he didn’t take the time to sharpen his axe! He didn’t take stock or plan properly.

R. Ian Seymour, excerpt from Discover Your True Potential

Set your goals in concrete but your plans in sand.

“Goals are dreams with deadlines.”

Diana Scharf Hunt

If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans!

God is not committed to anything other than His foreordained plan for your life.

Bob Gass

One with God is the majority.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.

Proverbs 16:3 NIV

Walter Chrysler was a man with definiteness of purpose. Chrysler began as a mechanic in a railroad shop in Salt Lake City, Utah. From his savings he had accumulated a little more than $4000, which he intended to use as a fund to set himself up in business. Looking around diligently he decided that the automobile business was an upcoming industry, so he determined to go into that field.

His entry into the business was dramatic and novel. His first move was one that shocked his friends and astounded his relatives, for it consisted in his investing all of his savings in an automobile. When the car arrived in Salt Lake City he gave his friends still another shock by proceeding to take it apart, piece by piece, until the parts were scattered all over the shop.

Then he began to put the parts together again. He repeated this operation so often that some of his friends thought he had lost his mind. That was because they did not understand his purpose. They saw what he was doing with the automobile, and it looked aimless and without purpose, but what they did not see was the plan that was taking form in Walter Chrysler’s mind.

He was making his mind “automobile conscious!” Saturating it with definiteness of purpose! He was observing carefully every detail of the car. When he was through with his job of tearing down his automobile and rebuilding it, he knew all of its good points and all of its weak ones. From that experience he began to design automobiles embodying all of the good points of the car he had bought and omitting all of its weaknesses. He did his job so thoroughly that when the Chrysler automobiles began to reach the market they became the sensation of the entire automobile industry.

His rise to fame and fortune were both rapid and definite, because he knew where he was going before he started out, and he prepared himself with painstaking accuracy for the journey.

Source: Napoleon Hill, The Master Key To Riches, 1965, New York: Fawcett Crest, p.46-47

Planning for tomorrow is time well spent; worrying about tomorrow is time well wasted.

“People whose goals are aligned with their values achieve more satisfaction and fulfilment in life… Choose your mountain not for its summit, but for the climb. Enjoy the process.

Jinny Ditzler, author and coach

“One of life’s great ironies is the fact that people who shoot low are often great shots. They aim for nothing and usually hit it.”

Rich DeVos, co-founder of Amway Corporation

John Maxwell states: Goals not only help you develop initial motivation by making your dreams obtainable, but they also help you continue to be motivated – and that creates momentum. Once you get going on the success journey, it will be very hard to stop you. It’s similar to what happens with a train. Getting it started is the toughest part of the trip. While standing still, a train can be prevented from moving forward by one-inch blocks of wood under each of the locomotive’s drive wheels. However, once a train gets up to speed, not even a steel-reinforced concrete wall five feet thick can stop it.

Source: John C. Maxwell, The Success Journey, 1997, Nashville: Thomas Nelson, p.78

When Paul Hogan, who portrayed the movie character Crocodile Dundee, was asked how he became successful, he answered, ‘The secret of my success is that I bit off more than I could chew, and then chewed as fast as I could.’

A goal properly set is already halfway reached.

Set goals that are out of reach, but not out of sight.

“When it comes to setting goals, the weakest ink is better than the strongest of memories.”

Colin Turner, author

Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.

Habakkuk 2:2-3 NIV

The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.

Proverbs 21:5 NIV

“Give me a stock clerk with a goal and I’ll give you a man who will make history. Give me a man with no goals and I will give you a stock clerk.”

J. C. Penney (1875-1971), American retailer and philanthropist

You need to monitor your goals and you need to see and know how you are doing otherwise you will falter. To prove this point, a man in a pub took bets from people in the pub and challenged one of England’s champion dart throwers that he could make the expert falter in less than four throws – and without interfering in anyway in the throw itself. To do this this, the challenger simply help up a piece of paper in front of the champion’s face, just after he had released the dart – so that the champion could not see how he did – and then he removed the dart before the next throw. Sure enough, the champion’s game went to pieces in three throws. Without seeing – instantly – the results of each throw, he missed the next shots. – Dorothy Leeds

Dorothy Leeds, PowerSpeak, 1988, London: Piatkus, p.8

“Plans get you into things but you’ve got to work your way out.”

Will Rogers (1879-1935), American humourist and actor

“We all have two choices: We can make a living or we can design a life.”

Jim Rohn

“My interest is in the future, because I’m going to spend the rest of my life there.” – Charles F. Kettering (1876-1958), inventor

“A man’s reach should exceed his grasp or what’s a heaven for?”

Robert Browning

‘One-Day-I’ll’ is a fairy tale: an imaginary time and place.

There should be no such thing as a person being completely contented. People become stale when their goals and present status are at one with each other.

Inspirational Breaking boundaries, beating benchmarks Bob Beamon’s World Record Long Jump 1968