Failure will be an option.

Originally published Monday, 02 January 2012.

January 2. My gym is packed. I drive around the parking lot three times to find a spot. There’s an annoying waiting list for childcare and the treadmill. Toes will be trampled on in Zumba class and there are not enough personal trainers to go around.

I put up with the overcrowding because I know in a few weeks things will ease up. New Year’s resolutions will quickly fade as life, stress, people and circumstances take over the ambitious goals we set.

For each of us resolutioners, failure will be an option.

Maybe this is why more and more people say they are not setting goals for 2012 ... the risk of failure just isn’t worth it. I get that and I’ve avoided goals because of the F-factor.

But the truth is, when I am not willing to risk failure, what I really have are just … wishes.

I wish I could be a better writer and leader.
I wish I knew how to be a great photographer.  
I wish that scale would drop some digits.

Wishes will get me nowhere.

Pray. Plan. Pursue. Praise.

These four words?

They have the potential to change our lives in 2012.  

Here’s why:

Pray. "Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you saying, "This is the way; walk in it" (Isaiah 30:21). ... As we pray, we draw closer to God’s presence. May 2012 be the year we hear His voice louder than ever in our lives.
Plan. "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11). ... God is a winner and therefore only produces winners. As we tap into His plans we see they include victory, not defeat.

Pursue. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13). ... God’s Word works. Refusing to compromise the pursuit of Truth in our lives is where we will find our unshakable confidence for the year of 2012.

Praise. My pastor says something that is so good … “Celebrate what God has done as you look ahead as to what God is going to do.” Taking breaths of thanks for all He does each day in 2012 will be powerful.

Faith convinces me it's worth it to believe again, risk again and yes, possibly … fail again.

But in 2012 I would rather try and fail than to be disobedient to God and pass my purpose onto someone else. So, I’m putting my wishes away and focusing in on these four words.

What about you? Has God given you a fresh vision for 2012? I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below and share with our Crosswalk community what God is saying to you.