FARGO — Soon we will celebrate the beginning of a new year. For some, you are ready to leave 2019 behind. For others, you would gladly go back and relive 2019 again.

Either way, Jan. 1, 2020, will come, and like every year there will be highlights and difficulties, progress and stumbles. Today’s question is: “How will you navigate through this year?”

I have learned there are several key discoveries that allow us to navigate through every season we encounter. These discoveries aren’t always apparent and don’t always come easy, but they provide a path forward in good times, when complacency can easily set in, and in hard times, when the way forward seems dim and difficult.

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The first discovery is to know your passion. Beyond what you enjoy or look forward to, what arena do you long to make a difference in? What cause is closest to your heart? If money were not a consideration, what would you love to give your time and energy to? Your passion is the arena that gives life to your soul. It is where you feel energized and easily lose track of time. It is the setting or the activity that you feel a joyous rhythm with and connection to. Knowing your passion allows you to move back to a place of stability and progress. The fact is, when you live for long periods out of your passion zone you struggle with a sense you are spinning your wheels; no lasting difference or impact is being accomplished.

The next discovery is to find your purpose. Every human being is created with a specific purpose: to love God and love people. And we also have a unique purpose based on our personality, strengths, experiences and skills. Your purpose describes at a heart level why you exist; what your unique contribution to this world is. A hammer and a wrench both have a specific purpose. If you use a wrench to do the work of a hammer you may accomplish the goal, but it will take longer and consume more energy. The wrench when misused can easily be damaged. To find your unique purpose, your why, and to allow that purpose to inform every area of your life, is so healthy. When I pursue my purpose at work, at home, and in my hobbies and organizations I participate in, it provides a consistent sense of satisfaction and growth throughout my days.

The third discovery is to follow your vision. If you could go to YouTube and play a video of your life three years from now, what would you want to see? What would your family, your relationships, your career look like? Where would you be physically, spiritually, financially? Vision is a compelling picture of a preferred future. It is not the same as goals, but I think that compelling picture can be quantified with goals. When those goals align with your vision the vision becomes achievable.

You do not have to be a follower of Jesus Christ to know your passion, find your purpose or follow your vision, but the leadership of Jesus Christ sure helps you with these three discoveries. Jesus was sent to earth to help us with passion, purpose and vision. Perhaps knowing Christ is where you need to start?