I never cease to be amazed at the fact that with all of the knowledge that we currently have about the need to be prepared for the future, many people are still averse to planning ahead. Having a plan helps us to move forward and to grow in a way that is less haphazard. It has been said, "The only degree of control that we have in an uncontrollable life is the degree to which we have a plan." Indeed this is true. Let me be clear - a plan is not a guarantee of anything. However, not having a plan is a guarantee that your future achievements and your results will be minimal at best.
As a Pastor, I have always sought to begin a new year with a vision and a plan for the year to come. It always helps us to keep the ministry on track and to provide a map for our direction. Mother Irma Gwinn, one of my spiritual mentors, often said when God is in your plans you can make your plans large. Thus, I have never set limits on what God and I can accomplish together. Because I believe the word of God, I know that for God all things are possible (Matthew 19-26).
As we begin this new year, it's time to have a plan for the things that you would like to achieve in 2013. Take the time to set some goals for 2013 - at minimum four. One should be spiritual, one physical (health and fitness), one financial and one relational (dealing with your interaction with others). You can have more if you like, but remember goals should be S.M.A.R.T. - specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Only plan as many goals as you think that you can achieve, but do not underestimate yourself or your ability. Most of us can accomplish far more that we think.
So, it's time to set the course for an exciting and amazing new year. Your vision is your only limitation. Think big. Think out of the box. Think differently. Think like you are God's son or daughter, because you are.
With a vision, a plan and a purpose,
Rev. Paul Hobson Sadler, Sr., Pastor
Mt. Zion Congregational Church United Church of Christ