Is drinking alcohol good? Is drinking alcohol bad? Drinking wine is one of life’s pleasures which even Jesus enjoyed, but if we drink alcohol all the time we become a drunkard. So if we wake up thinking about drinking and drinking then becomes a driving force in our lives, drinking alcohol becomes a goal. And if it becomes a goal, we usually become a drunkard. Now is being a drunkard wrong? See 1 Corinthians 5:11.

Is eating good? Is eating bad? Eating is a method God has given us that leads to physical nourishment. However, if we eat all the time we are called a glutton. So if we become consumed with food and eating becomes a driving force in our lives, it becomes a goal. And if it becomes a goal, we usually become gluttons. Now is being a glutton wrong? See Deuteronomy 21:20.

Is sleeping good? Is sleeping bad? Sleeping is God’s method of refreshing our bodies. But if we sleep a lot we become sluggards. If we wake up, only longing to go back to sleep, sleep is no longer a method to a healthy life, it becomes a goal. And if it becomes a goal, we will become a sluggard. Now is being a sluggard wrong? See Proverbs 24:30-34.

Is churching planting good? Or is church planting bad? Church planting, discipleship, work, eating, sleeping, etc., are all methods and tools we may use to glorify God. But whenever a method becomes a goal, we have crossed from terra firma to very thin ice.

The past 2 months I’ve met with many church and mission leaders in Asia and North America. Three leaders were poignant in emphasizing their respective organizations exist to plant churches. As we consider accountability and setting goals in our lives and work; if you are doing B4T, PLEASE remember that the goal is neither work nor church planting. The goal of B4T is to glorify Jesus in everything we do. Anything that replaces the Kingdom – anything that interferes with worshipping Jesus becomes an idol. And idolatry is sin. See Deuteronomy 5:7-10.

Setting goals is a useful method for helping us to stay on track in life so as to fulfill the assignments God has given us. And one MAJOR reason we need accountability is to prevent a method from becoming a goal. Setting goals are a tool used to accomplish the methods and strategies God has given us in our life, and work, and outreach, in everything. These methods and strategies that God has given us are tools by which we glorify Him. The tool is never the goal. The means never justifies the end.

Whatever method or strategy you may be passionate about, take care not to allow it to become a goal.



PATRICK LAI and his family have worked in SE Asia for over 37 years. His experience in doing business with Jesus has brought him to understand the meaning of work and worship in the marketplace. He started 14 businesses in four countries, six of which are still operating. Patrick and his wife, May, mentor and coach businesspeople working where there are few or no Christians. Check out Patrick’s latest book, Workship, now available in paperback and e-book.

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