Administration,  Life,  Personal

Being Intentional

Do you know yet what you will do?

I tell my congregation all the time that a major difference exists between good intentions and being intentional.

Every good intention that does not get acted upon ends up in the grave rotting with the rest of the corpse. Now not all of our intentional acts work the way we want them to work. But how can we know if we are not intentional to try?

Of course, being intentional and being willing does not mean that we will always rise to the challenge. As I share how the I will statements fit within my MISSION, please do not think that I am perfect on this.

So, with that caveat, let me break down my statement, with the goal of helping you construct yours.

As I have posted previously, here is my MISSION statement.

  • I will love the Lord, and Savior, Jesus Christ, submit to His authority in my life, and rely on His power to use my God-given abilities to serve others – beginning with my family.
  • I will seek to grow in my knowledge and understanding of God’s truths and His will for my life.
  • I will trust in His provision (Psalm 73.25-26).
  • I will externalize my faith by reaching out to others, teaching them God’s truths, and encouraging others to grow in their own relationship with Christ, so they may disciple others as well (Colossians 1.28-29).

Frankly, my MISSION statement is too long for what most consider a good statement. If you cannot recite it easily (from memory), most will say it is too long. But, let me suggest that my statement is very simple, even if I may miss out on few words when reciting it.

How is that so?

Well, the four statements actually relate to the 4Ls that are the foundation of my ministry. Although the statements are not in the same order as I list my L’s, I have a reason for that as well. So, the order is LOVE, LEARN, LIVE, LEAD (the usual order is LEARN, LIVE, LOVE, LEAD).

The reason for the switch in the order* is that the Great Commandment revolves around our love for God and others. Thus, it should be first in priority for any God-follower. Again, I am not nearly perfect in this goal, but it should be the priority.

*As for the usual order of the L’s (what I refer to as my STEPS), I will cover that specifically when I get to that portion of this current blog series.

So, my MISSION begins with a goal to love – God, then others (beginning with my family). That is, I WILL love God. That part of my MISSION fits the LOVE aspect of my life.

Next, in order to properly LOVE God, I need to better know God. Thus, I need to constantly LEARN more about Him. I understand that a distinct difference between knowing about versus knowing, but to better know God, I must seek to know more about Him as well. Additionally, I must LEARN what He wants me do and even LEARN how to do it (better). The idea of LEARN is captured in the second bullet above.

But it is not enough to know, we must do. As Jesus, Paul, and James make clear hearing is not enough. We must do what we hear. That is, when we have done our LEARNing, we must LIVE. To LIVE for God is to trust God in how He leads and provides. Thus, to LIVE represents the third bullet in my MISSION.

Lastly, the Great Commission means we are to LEAD others. As we LEARN, LIVE, and LOVE, we are then to LEAD others to do the same. Thus, the final part of my MISSION is to LEAD.

Again, the purpose of the MISSION is to help define what is necessary to do in order to achieve your VISION. The VISION may be something short-term, or it could be a life-long goal. For me, the information you see in this post, and in this series generally, will be life-long from my perspective. But the process is the same for any goal.

The key again is to identify what you will do to achieve the VISION. For me, the essence of my statements relates to the fact I will LOVE…I will LEARN…I will LIVE…I will LEAD.

If I do each of those things consistently, I should be moving in the right direction. Of course, those four actions do not guarantee that I will become who God wants me to be, but if I couple those words with the remainder of the statements describing who I will LOVE, what I will LEARN, how I will LIVE, and who and how I LEAD, well, then I should be moving in the right direction.

So, I repeat the question from the beginning of this post (which has been a part of the past two posts as well): Do you know what you will do?

Again, you may not be perfect at doing what you intend to do. The Lord knows I am not. But we must move beyond good intentions and truly work to do. That is, it is more than I want to; the goal is I will.

So, what will you commit to do? Not just occasionally, but as a lifestyle. When you know that, you have a MISSION.

Then, all you have to do is live the MISSION you have set. We will turn to that idea next week.

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