GOALS? PLANS? A NEW FOCUS FOR A NEW ERA
Press pause on your planning process and do this instead…
Today as I sat at my desk, pen poised, ready to write and review my plans for the coming weeks I was met with a much-needed reminder of something that God has repeatedly spoken to me so clearly, but that I so often fail to maintain in the busyness of everyday life in the throes of doing business and ministry.
I should know better. But I'm being honest here. The very thing that God has highlighted over the last 8 years as part of my divine mandate to share with women of God around the globe is the very thing that I have struggled the most to implement. I know it. I wholeheartedly believe it. I desire to be the embodiment of all that God has called me to be, but sometimes, honestly, I have a hard time putting it into practice.
Allow me to explain...
First of all, something you should know about me - I love planners. And yes - I’ve been known to get all geeky with the different pens, colours, and stickers that I can use to help me visually map out my time. So, just before Christmas, as I’ve done for years, I purchased a new planner ready to move into the new year full of fresh motivation and a renewed resolve to plan and organise my time in the most effective way possible to enable me to make the most impact with the gifts and abilities God has given me.
So far so good. This time though, something was different. Sure, I got busy filling in all the usual details; my goals, objectives, and a framework with action steps for the year. But within a week of the new year starting, I hit a wall. Somehow the whole process just wasn’t resonating with me in the same way as it had before. And so, my planner sat on my desk untouched for the next few weeks as I wrestled with God about what was going on. It’s been an interesting time and I’m grateful for the way that God so graciously reminds us of things we know but have a hard time living out.
Fast forward to today, and here I was sat at my desk, pen poised again, asking God “What’s on YOUR heart? What do YOU want to say? At the start of this month, what should I be focusing on in order to move forward in all that you have for me to do this year?”
As I prayed, my eyes were instantly directed to the planner sitting closed on my desk, and to its title emblazoned on the front cover - the highly acclaimed ‘Full Focus Planner’. You see, I bought this planner knowing that a major part of any successful strategy for accomplishing your goals is the ability to focus. To shut out distractions, eliminate procrastination, and have our eyes firmly aligned with exactly what we're trying to achieve and the steps to get there. Today though, when I looked at that planner cover, I felt a check in my spirit as my eyes fell on those words; 'full focus'.
As busy women, entrepreneurs, and ministry leaders, we are all too aware of the need to focus in order to get things done. But as women whose hearts are desperately wanting to live out God's purpose and plan for our lives, where exactly should our focus be?
Personally, I have plenty of clarity about what it is God has called me to do and a clear vision of my core divine assignments. Those things are written down as a reminder not to get distracted by every request or opportunity that may be 'good' but not part of 'God's' call on my life. And of course, each of those divine assignments is made up of various activities - each requiring some sort of action plan, with a list of creative ideas to execute, and goals to give some structure to my daily life as I press forward towards the dreams that God has placed in my heart.
BUT. And it's a big BUT. Even with that sense of clarity, I found myself asking again today: 'Where should my focus be?'
The answer came loud and clear as I pressed into God for what He would have me focus on today. "My child, it's so simple. Just focus fully on ME'.
Sure - it sounds obvious - God should be our priority. We know that. But this was not that kind of reminder. No. This was a mic drop moment.
Why? Because in my heart I know that God has spoken to me over and over again about Him being my FULL FOCUS. About being fixed on His gaze above all else. About spending extended periods of time in His presence every day with no agenda other than to BE with Him. To sit with my Father. To know Him and to be known by Him. Not seeking out any strategies or solutions, but simply seeking His face - allowing His heart to penetrate the deepest parts of my soul.
I'm also acutely aware that one of the things God has called me to do is extend that invitation to others - to those who are building with God - especially to His daughters - whether it be in life, business or ministry. Those women who know they have a call on their life and whose desire is to walk out of every part of God's plan.
I know it sounds crazy. Talking about devoting our focus to anything other than our goals and the strategies to get there sounds totally upside down and completely counter-intuitive to the entrepreneurs among us, or I guess any woman on a mission to accomplish great things for God. But I'm reminded that the Kingdom of God IS an upside-down Kingdom. And that God's ways are not the world's ways.
So why do we seem to automatically adopt the world's ways of accomplishing our God-given assignments? Why do we insist on building so much of what we’re building for God using this world’s systems and strategies for success? If they're truly Kingdom assignments, surely it would make more sense to adopt Kingdom methods and divine strategies to see them fulfilled?
New Wineskins and a Kingdom Mind-Shift
Truthfully, it's not easy to make the shift into this Kingdom mindset. It doesn't come naturally to our natural minds because it's not logical, and it often goes against the grain of all we have learned about productivity and achieving great things. But friend, I'm wholeheartedly convinced that this new era that we find ourselves living in comes with a new requirement that is essential to seeing the Kingdom come in power: that we would become new wineskins equipped with new kingdom mindsets that are open to receive God's divine strategies and solutions for life, business and ministry in these last days.
There is much to accomplish on the earth. And there's an urgency in this hour to be in step with God and what He's doing. I believe the trumpet call has gone out for the sons and daughters of God to arise and take their place. But I truly believe that His plans and purposes will only be fulfilled in and through us when we make Him our FULL FOCUS. Not the plans, not the strategies, not even the goals. But simply Him. His presence. His face. His heart.
Here’s why. The Word of God says that He shares His secrets with His friends. How awesome is that?? But true friendship requires intimacy. And real intimacy comes from BEING with the one you love - intentionally carving out dedicated time and attention to nurture a love relationship. And that is God's desire above all else. That we would know Him. REALLY Know Him. And that our desire to be in His presence would eclipse every other desire in our hearts. That our desire for Him would be greater than our desire to achieve or accomplish any great goal - even if it's a God-given one.
And friends, I know without a shadow of a doubt that when we find ourselves in that place of intimacy, when our full focus is on Him and Him alone - He graciously imparts His creativity, His thoughts, His strategies, His methods, His God-ideas and His divine solutions for everything He is wanting to accomplish in and through us on the earth.
So, as I sat today ready to plan out my points of focus for the days ahead and strategies for accomplishing all that God has put on my heart to do, my mic-drop moment served to stop me in my tracks and remind me once again to shift my focus. To re-align my heart with His, accept His invitation to deeper intimacy and into the place of divine encounter. To prioritise His presence above all else and allow Him to work in and through me to accomplish His plans and purposes - doing what only He can do as I come fully surrendered, giving Him my full focus.
Now I'm extending that same invitation to you. Will you accept it?
Will you choose with me to shift your focus?
Will you lay all your goals, your plans, and your busyness at His feet today and choose to step into that place of deep encounter with the Father's heart?
I can promise that when you choose to make Him your focus. His presence. His Kingdom. Fixing your eyes on Him and Him alone. Not only will you discover the depths of God's love for you like never before, but you will be empowered and equipped in new and fresh ways with every single thing you need for the fulfilment of every God-given dream and every divine assignment He has given you.
If any of this resonates with you, please do share your thoughts in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!
Oh, and if you want to join me on the journey - why not sign up for my free email devotions where I will be sharing more about what all of this looks like in practice and how we can walk together into all that God has called us to be and do in this new era. There will be all sorts of goodies and useful resources to help you along the way. If you sign up HERE you’ll also receive a copy of my free guide ‘3 Keys to a Life Without Limits’ :)
To close, I want to leave you with a few powerful scriptures that will help to anchor your heart as you make this shift...
"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." (Matthew 6:33)
"Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart." (Psalm 37:4)
"I can do all this through him who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:13)
Thanks for reading friends. Praying God’s blessings over your week!
PS. If this post has touched your heart in any way, would you please share it with someone you know who might need a fresh touch from God? You never know what effect it may have and what God might do through you in the days ahead by simply obeying His prompting to share this message. I would love for as many people as possible to join us on this journey of discovering the depths of God's love, discovering our God-given dreams, and walking in the fullness of all that He has for us.