As a decade ends and we are going into the twenties I take a look around and see where God has taken me. I started 2010 as a father of three toddlers and a baby on the way. I was working full time, studying Economics in the evenings striving for that degree.
Now I am a father of three teenagers and a nine-year old. My degree is in a frame on the wall of my office, and I am still working full time. (Actually a lot more than full time when it’s time for year closure, which is why I never had time to blog about Hanukka). Since 2015, I am also a writer, or rather a struggling wannabe writer, who has been rejected more times than I can count, of a book series that I got a vision for in 2012.
The main thing I bring with me into the twenties is to stop striving for goals, but for a purpose. My main purpose should be God. My secondary purpose should be my wife and children. My third purpose should be my own happiness. In that order. They depend on one another, really.
Any kind of goal I set that doesn’t serve any of those purposes is not worth my time. Yes, I want to lose weight and exercise more. I want to read more books. I want to write more. I want to learn a fourth language. These are all quite typical New-Years resolutions. The problem with them is that they add more stress. Another goal. Another thing to do. Another accomplishment.
What I want to do in the twenties is to take a step back and say – what can I remove? What should I do less of?
The purpose of my writing is to bring glory to God. If as a result of my writing I neglect my family, I will have accomplished nothing. If I stress myself out until I sacrifice my own happiness, become a worse husband and father, and pray less to God, then that goal was not worth it.
If we set up goals for the twenties, they should serve a higher purpose. If they defeat the purpose, they are not worth it. Actually, if we don’t enjoy the journey, we won’t enjoy accomplishing the goal either.
I want to succeed in my writing. I want the twenties to be the decade in which I will see my book in print. But when I reach that top I want my wife to be with me and hold my hand. No goal is worth anything without her by my side.
Many of you might, just like me, assess your prayer life and Bible reading at this time of the year. Just like me, you may think of ways to add more of closeness to God to your daily schedule. We should do that, but let it be on the expense of something else. Maybe cut down one or two of the regular TV-programs you watch. Maybe reduce your time on social media. Maybe watch less sports.
May 2020 be the year in which we remove unnecessary goals and focus on our main purpose in life – and let all our other goals serve that purpose. And enjoy the journey.
Happy new decade.