Some people are still embarrassed to talk about “success”. They immediately equate it to pride, arrogance, greed, dishonesty, etc. They don’t want to be associated with anything that will make them look ambitious or greedy. Maybe they have not grasped the real concept. It’s a deception from Satan for making us believe that we’re not supposed to do anything with our dreams, nor to work hard on our goals. We were led to believe that it’s okay to just live passively and just go with the flow of life. That’s actually counterintuitive to God’s principle of living our lives to the fullest.
God At The Center
There is always an extreme view on each side of the pole when we talk about success. Some think that we can achieve anything we want and that suffering is equivalent to failure. On the other end, some think that we are not supposed to take an active role in fulfilling our goals in life. The proper view is, we must place God at the center of our lives and let Him direct us to fulfill our purpose.
Many of us still fail to understand the concept of “success” in the eyes of our loving God. It’s natural for us to go through suffering, it’s part of life. Not every undertaking He will ask us to do is grand or big, sometimes it’s small and the progress is snail-paced. Sometimes, the process is difficult and will challenge our trust in Him.
If we allow God to take control of our lives, He will balance our views, thought patterns, and actions. When God created us and gifted us with different talents and abilities, it wasn’t meant for display. He meant it for us to utilize it and nurture it to be a blessing to others. It’s the very essence of what He was teaching out of the Parable of the Talents. If our success was obtained by exploitation, oppression, and injustice, simply to feed our insatiable greed for power, fame, and fortune, then, that’s not success, that’s plain greediness!
God’s view of success is different from the world’s standard. It’s not a popularity contest nor a competition on who has the highest net worth, influence, or authority. It’s not grand, but actually, a humble posture. God’s way of success is simply accomplishing the purpose He had set for our lives. It is written, “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” (Proverbs 16:3) Though there will be times when God will allow His children to be popular, rich, and highly influential incidentally, the main thrust is for them to create eternal value in the lives of others.
We can see the likes of Dr. Ravi Zacharias, a very popular apologist, David Green, and Cathy S. Truett, accomplished entrepreneurs with high net worth, and Jim Rohn, a global thought leader. Their lives continue to inspire many people. The reason these people became successful is that they were not fixated on wealth, fame, and power, but rather they used it as a conduit to accomplish what God had asked them to do. They are focused on God and their purpose. Obedience to God is their number one priority.
So, if we want to be truly successful, truly more than okay, we must first honor God above all else. Then, figure out what’s our life purpose. Then, regularly pray for God’s leading and direction on how we can best utilize our God-given abilities and resources to achieve our life goals. Lastly, live our lives with the “end” in mind. What legacy do we want to leave behind? What achievement do we want to accomplish that is far greater than material possession, authority, and prominence but has an eternal impact? Move from an okay life to a God-ordained successful life.