I grew up in a house that was 100 years old. My family was always proud of that fact.
It was a three-story brick farmhouse in the Ohio countryside. Cast iron radiators populated every room. Thick wooden frames anchored every doorway. The builders of this home designed it for success. To stand strong. To accomplish its purpose.
Our goals can also be designed for successes. Designed to stand strong beneath the weight of distraction and fatigue.
Unfortunately, most of our goals are designed more like the forts I used to build in the woods. They were fun to make but didn’t last long.
Are Your Worship Ministry Goals Designed For Success?
Write a worship song
Train a volunteer worship leader
Listen to more music
Read the Bible
Recruit more volunteers onto the team
Introduce more songs to my church
Have more compassion for my church family
Be more connected with my volunteer team
Record a worship album
At first glance, these seem like great goals. A closer look reveals the inevitable – they’ll crumble at the first gust of wind.
Successful Goals Are Specific
If you’re going to hit your target you have to know what you’re aiming for. Ambiguous goals get you nowhere. Specific goals have a good chance of success. Compare these ambiguous goals vs. specific goals.
Start writing songs vs. Write three congregational worship songs
Train a volunteer worship leader vs. Train Amy to lead worship for a Sunday night service
Listen to more music vs. Listen to 1 new worship album each month
Successful Goals Are Measurable
Part of the fun of reaching a goal is seeing your progress along the way. A successful goal is a measurable goal.
Recruit more volunteers vs. Recruit three new volunteers
Introduce more worship songs vs. Introduce 6 new worship songs
Become a better guitar player vs. Improvise confidently in the keys of G, D, and E
Successful Goals Are Actionable
This simple change may be the difference between life or death for your goal. Begin each goal with a strong verb.
Have more compassion for my church family vs. Speak with two church members after every service
Be more connected with my volunteer team vs. Call each volunteer once a month
To “have” more compassion or “be” more connected is a state of being – not an action.
Successful Goals Are Risky
When there’s a challenge we rise to it. Without a challenge, we coast.
Goal setting guru Michael Hyatt says goals are either in our comfort zone, discomfort zone or the delusion zone. I like that. We don’t have any motivation to accomplish comfortable goals. We are defeated by delusional goals. Get into the “Discomfort Zone”
Recruit 1 new volunteer vs. Recruit 4 new volunteers this year (comfort to discomfort)
Host one worship team gathering vs. Host a team gathering each quarter (comfort to discomfort)
Record a full-length studio album vs. Record a live EP (delusion to discomfort)
Start a School of Worship vs. Train up 3 worship leader (delusion to discomfort)
We’re all at different places in our personal development and ministry experience. Only you know if you should bump it up from your comfort zone or reign it in from the delusion zone.
Successful Goals Are Time-Keyed
A time-key can be a deadline, the frequency you repeat something or a time trigger for when to begin.
Introduce 3 new songs vs. Introduce 3 new songs by the end of June. (deadline)
Train a new worship Leader vs. Train Caleb to lead worship for Sunday, September 15th. (deadline)
Read more books vs. Read one book a month (Frequency)
Introduce more songs vs. Introduce one new song every six weeks (Frequency)
Pray more with my team vs. Pray for 10 minutes before each service (time trigger)
Communicate with my team more vs. Email my team every Monday morning (time trigger)
Put It All Together
“Get better about reading the Bible”. This goal is designed to fail. Let’s set it up for success.
Read the Bible – Action
Read through the whole New Testament – Specific
Read two chapters of the New Testament in each sitting – Measurable
Read Two Chapters of the New Testament 5 days a week – Time Keyed
Read Two Chapters of the New Testament at 6:00am 5 Days a week – Risky
Successful Goals are:
Successful Goals are SMART. Put this time tested acronym to work for you. I own much of this insight to Michael Hyatt’s book Your Best Year Ever. A great book to kick-start your year.
If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry. Let’s keep it simple. Start with just three goals.
1 for your worship ministry
1 for your personal / spiritual growth & development
1 for your home / family
Download my custom Successful Goals Worksheet to get started.
Don’t handicap your worship ministry with weak goals. Progress and momentum are closer than you think.
This article originally appeared here.