Do You Have Realistic Goals?

● What do you want out of life? Do you have reasonable expectations, or do you fantasize about things that may be beyond your ability or means? A keen observer of human nature gave this wise advice: “It is better to be satisfied with what is before your eyes than give rein to desire; this too is emptiness and chasing the wind.”​—Ecclesiastes 6:9, The New English Bible.

“What is before [our] eyes” refers to our present circumstances and realities. To be sure, there is nothing wrong with trying to improve our lives. The point the Bible makes, however, is that the wise do not pursue unrealistic goals. These may be for fame, riches, the ideal marriage mate, or perfect health.

Moreover, those who attain a certain goal, such as material riches, may still crave more. “A mere lover of silver will not be satisfied with silver, neither any lover of wealth with income. This too is vanity,” the Bible frankly states. (Ecclesiastes 5:10) The spiritually wise, therefore, try to be content with what they have, “what is before [their] eyes.” Yes, they acknowledge this truth: “We have brought nothing into the world, and neither can we carry anything out.”​—1 Timothy 6:7.

Human nature is such that the greatest happiness comes to those who satisfy their spiritual needs. (Matthew 5:3) How can we do that? Jesus Christ said: “Man must live, not on bread alone, but on every utterance coming forth through Jehovah’s mouth.” (Matthew 4:4) Those precious utterances are found in the Bible, and they are free for the taking.

One such utterance is found at Psalm 37:4. It reads: “Take exquisite delight in Jehovah, and he will give you the requests of your heart.” As God Almighty, Jehovah will grant his faithful worshippers things that no human can give: perfect health, material security, and everlasting life in Paradise on earth. (Luke 23:43; Revelation 21:3, 4) Trusting in these words is not being unrealistic.