· Ministry to Men

A New Year with new hope

By Dr. Rick Vance

Now that we are nearing the end of the year, it is a good time to consider how you are progressing toward the goals you established for your ministry in 2019.

According to a 2017 article in Forbes only 8 percent of people follow through on their New Year’s resolutions. Knowing this statistic makes goal setting seem useless, but there are some things you can do to achieve the goals you will establish for 2020.

1. Make them meaningful. Establish goals that are important to you and to the ministry to which God has called you. If you are not passionate about the goals, you are unlikely to achieve them.

2. Be realistic. Most people overestimate what they can accomplish. Instead of setting a goal to read the entire Bible in a year, why not set a goal to read Scripture for 30 minutes each day?

3. Don’t focus on setbacks. Forbes indicates that 80 percent of people will experience a setback in the first 30 days. When this happens, most people just stop trying. Instead of throwing in the towel, extend grace to yourself and shift to Plan B.

4. Find a person or a group of people to whom you will be accountable. People are more likely to stay on point if they are accountable to someone else.

When I was 12, my pastor encouraged me to choose a life Scripture verse. I chose Philippians 4:13: “I can do all things through Christ . . .” My pastor advised me that the journey of living in accordance with that Scripture might not be easy.

He was correct.

Many times, I have not achieved my goals.

I continue to remind myself as I am reminding you; “You can do all things through Christ . . .”

I pray you will not be discouraged if you failed to achieve the goals you established for 2019.

I hope the goals you establish for 2020 will be challenging and achievable through the power of Christ who gives you strength.

Have a blessed Christmas.

Your brother on the journey,

The Rev. Dr. Rick Vance, director of the Center for Men’s Ministries

General Commission on UM Men



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