"Goals need to be in the new HR system by early next week," my boss announced in our weekly leadership meeting.
Sheesh, I thought in my head while starting to stress sweat.
How can I write goals for my team? I'm still so unsure of what we are supposed to be doing. I don't even know what I should be focused on, let alone telling my team what their priorities are.
On top of our new and rather vague role, the recent acquisition and following merger activities had caused rapid changes to both how we were organized and the companies' priorities. Plus, Covid-19 had changed everything about our business focus for 2020. We were finally coming out of triage mode where running around putting out fires and attempting to keep up was a normal day. I had not even thought about goals past getting through each day since the start of the COVID-19 shutdown three months prior.
So, with trepidation, I penciled in an hour in my schedule for the next day to get the goals in the HR program and moved onto my next meeting.
That evening, still anxious about the goals and feeling like a terrible fraud, I went on a bike ride to talk with God. I relayed to Him that I had zero clues to what I was supposed to be doing in this role. I bemoaned that I was a complete fraud and angrily asked why He had brought me here to this position to fail? Surely, this was when they would find out that I actually had no idea what I was doing and would fire me.
Fear springing tears to my eyes, I pedaled hard, trying to outrun my angst. Suddenly, a gentle nudge whispered to my conscious – what about the goals you wrote in November last year? Humph, I sighed, completely dismissing the notion.
When I took on the role, I thought I knew what needed to be done and was confident in my abilities. But now I only believed that I was seriously mistaken and barely hanging in there. I had canned the goals I had written back then, and rather, was taking tasks and completing them as they came along, hoping to fake til I made it. It was not going so well.
The nudge came again; this time, a bit more forceful – "review the goals." Fine, I responded in my head, rolling my eyes in disbelief. I will look for my old day planner when I get home. Surely, they will only reveal how naive I was when I first took on the job.
That evening, I searched out the day planner and started reading through the vision and goals I had written seven months earlier. A knowing spread through my gut. They were exactly right. As I read through the words God had said when I took on the role, my heart recognized that God had given me the perfect vision and the mission for this role. Completing these tasks would help our company keep growing, and they would help my team and myself succeed.
My heart also recognized that I had lost the vision and started failing in the mission as I had moved away from God in fear. That season was filled with hardship and stress, fear, and doubt, and as I had sunk into my fear, I had walked away from a life joined with Christ. I had stopped leaning on my source and strength, and I was flailing in the wind.
God is the one who gives us vision and mission-critical tasks that bring His Kingdom to earth and empowers us to complete them. As part of our inheritance, we get special parts to play in His plan in all kinds of roles and places. Every place, yes, even secular workplaces, are part of the greater mission God put in motion to save each person in the world. We are the tangible hands and feet, making His will happen in our earthly places, as we allow God to task us out wherever He places us.
But we must join our life with His and stay connected to the Vine to thrive. Before He commissions them, Jesus tells His disciples, "I am the sprouting vine and you're my branches. As you live in union with me as your source, fruitfulness will stream from within you—but when you live separated from me you are powerless." In the same teaching, where He is prepping them for His leaving earth, He says, You didn't choose me, but I've chosen and commissioned you to go into the world to bear fruit. And your fruit will last, because whatever you ask of my Father, for my sake, he will give it to you! So, this is my parting command: Love one another deeply!" These were literally the people He chose and who had left their whole lives to follow Him. But He needed to give them vision and instructions for the next season and the strength to live it out.
Giving our whole life to God, and His will is where we find our vision and mission. But only by staying connected to Jesus by the Holy Spirit's indwelling are we empowered to see our missions through, even though a global pandemic.
Father, we desire to be on a mission with you. We want to be the light and bring your kingdom to earth. Give us vision as we surrender our whole lives to join with you. Spirit, Help us understand how we should serve in our roles and tasks this season, and empower us to see it through when things get hard or seem not to be working. Thank you for your wisdom and guidance, and thank you for allowing us to be a part of your plan.
This weeks scripture study:
So Jesus said, “I speak to you timeless truth. The Son is not able to do anything from himself or through my own initiative. I only do the works that I see the Father doing, for the Son does the same works as his Father. “Because the Father loves his Son so much, he always reveals to me everything that he is about to do. And you will all be amazed when he shows me even greater works than what you’ve seen so far!
Jesus repeated his greeting, “Peace to you!” And he told them, “Just as the Father has sent me, I’m now sending you.” John 20:21
‘This is what I will do in the last days—I will pour out my Spirit on everybody and cause your sons and daughters to prophesy, and your young men will see visions, and your old men will experience dreams from God. The Holy Spirit will come upon all my servants, men and women alike, and they will prophesy. Acts 2:17-18
This Week's Challenge:
God has a vision and mission for you. It is part of your rightful inheritance to have Kingdom-building work to do. It could be where you already are, or God could be asking you to surrender in faith to a new place.
So, whether you have a vision and mission that you need to revisit as I did, or whether you need to allow God to speak one to you, it's time to get going. We have Kingdom work to do here on earth, and no time to waste.
This week, I challenge you to find some time to allow God to speak to you and give you a vision and a mission. In surrender to God's will, throwing out your fear, and anything else standing in your way, He will be faithful to give. Now write it down and get going.