Two General Time Man./Goal Questions

I can be a bit dense when it comes to the actual implementation of particular time management concepts. I have trouble translating it from theory to practice without lots of specifics, examples, pictures, etc. So there are a couple of questions that have been boggling me for a while. Since finding this site, it occurs to me that SOMEONE around here can probably answer them. ;)

1. How exactly does one go about prioritizing a day's activities, taking long-term goals into consideration? I guess what I mean is, I know that when setting a long-term goal it's necessary to break it into steps and (at some point) schedule those steps. But how exactly does that fit into the DAY'S planning, along with all of the routine things that need to be done?

2. Does anyone have any suggestions for quantifying spiritual goals? I have been pretty successful at setting other goals, and making them concrete - be able to do x push-ups by x date, finish x by x, read x books this year, etc. - but spiritual goals are eluding me. I just can't figure out (aside from Bible reading) how to quantify these things to make them concrete enough to work toward.

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Interesting

Does anyone have any suggestions for quantifying spiritual goals? I have been pretty successful at setting other goals, and making them concrete ... but spiritual goals are eluding me. I just can't figure out (aside from Bible reading) how to quantify these things to make them concrete enough to work toward.

Personally I have no spiritual goals. Other than generics such as Lev 11:45; 1 Tim 3:2--12, 4:14--16; James 1:22 I leave my spiritual goals upto God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. He knows better than me. Some of the goals I will never establish are "pray 3 hours a day", "read my Bible for an hour every day" or "evangelise the next 10 people I meet".

What I do do is read various books on spiritual formation. For example, Richard Foster's "Celebration of Discipline", and "Prayer". Two great books that changed how I understood steps in spiritual formation. I love the books of Scot McKinght; his "Jesus Creed" is a modern classic. As too is Dallas Willard's "The Divine Conspiracy". Also the works of Anglican Bishop Tom Wright; only read his popular books only at the moment so far I've not tackled his magnum opus "The New Testament and the People of God". Wright's excellent series of New Testament commentaries "... for Everyone" are really useful. I also really appreciate books by Mark Stibbe whom I've had the privilege of hearing speak many times.

In the realm of spiritual goals I'll steal a phrase from Stibbe: "not driven by whips of law but drawn by chords of love".

Thanks. :)

"Some of the goals I will never establish are "pray 3 hours a day", "read my Bible for an hour every day" or "evangelise the next 10 people I meet"."

I agree; there's just something wrong about stuff like this. lol That's why it's left me so baffled. It seems there must be *something* quantifiable, though, that will naturally help build toward the unquantifiable stuff. (The one thing I have been trying to do lately is read through the Bible once every year. Each year I pick a different "topic" to focus on and take notes on, to keep me actually paying attention to what I'm reading; otherwise my mind wanders so much I might as well have not read whatever I just read!)

I'm going to make a note of these books you guys are recommending; they sound terrific!

Be blessed!
~Rachel <><

You might check out the

You might check out the Bible reading sheets on this site. It's a great way to stay on target (says the guy who hasn't read his Bible in about a week ... uh, I need to go do that!).

Treat It Like Anything Else

I've found it helpful to treat it like any other goal. For example, I want to pray more so I set an appointment with God. Now, I also am praying for help to pray MORE, and I will allocate more time than I'll probably use, but I make a point in the day to do these things (pray, read, etc.)

It really depends on what you're doing. One other thing I've found helpful is to find a mentor to challenge you along the way (how's the reading going? Prayed much lately? etc.) It should be someone you trust to challenge you, preferably someone who will see you often. That's the great thing about the local church; God wanted us to help each other along the way!

If you want to chat more about this off channel, drop me a line. I'd love to encourage and help you along the way.

Thomas

PS - Since we're recommending books, I'd heartily recommend John Piper's "Desiring God" along with "The Discipline of Grace" by Jerry Bridges. Both great reads for cultivating a passion for the Savior.