What is success?
How do you know when you have achieved it? Is it when you finally can buy that new car, or possibly you measure your success by your job position, your house and neighborhood, or even by the tags that are attached to the clothes in your closet? The world tells us that in order to be successful we need to set goals, achieve them and then set more. But I wonder how God measures success? Does He look at what we have? The car we drive? The clothes we wear? I doubt it.
In fact, some of the most successful people in the bible had absolutely nothing. Jeremiah was flat broke, Joseph was imprisoned and then a slave before he became second in command of all of Egypt, and Jesus had
“nowhere to lay his head” (Matt. 8:20), and He was the Son of God!
We place an immense amount of pressure on ourselves every day to be more, do more, have more. We envy the “Joneses” and therefore do everything in our power to be just like them, have what they have, and ultimately, drive ourselves crazy in the process. Stress becomes a way of life, leading the way for sickness and depression. Was this your goal? Is that what you wanted to be when you grew up…sick and depressed? I doubt it.
Jeremiah may have been poor; in fact nobody even listened to what he had to say. For 40 years he gave Jerusalem God’s message of repentance or doom. They did not listen. He dishonored himself before the people in demonstration of the things that would befall them if they did not turn their faces to God. They did not repent. He was Faithful, they were doomed. I’m sure that the Israelites did not view Jeremiah as a rich man or a success for that matter, for no one listened to a word he said. In fact they laughed at him. But God did. Why? Because he was faithful and obedient. That is all that God ask from us, faith and obedience.
Goals are not bad, nor are money or security or many of the other things that the world can provide. It is when we rely on the world or our own efforts to provide that security, or when we give possessions and money a front row seat in our hearts, before God, that we begin to slide down that slippery slope of humanity.
We can learn many wonderful lessons about health, wealth and security from the Godly sons and daughters of the bible. And just because you are obedient and faithful to God does not mean that you will be poor or lose everything, there are many examples of people who were immensely blessed, yet were faithful followers. Solomon asked for wisdom, but God gave him wealth as well. Martha, Lazarus’ sister, was wealthy and yet loved the Lord with all her heart. These two people were obedient and God blessed them. Obedience is the key to right living with God.
We all know in our hearts when we are doing something we shouldn’t be doing, watching something we shouldn’t be watching, saying something that we shouldn’t be saying. It’s that tug at your heart that gives you pause, a flash of regret after you’ve let something slip. We’ve all done it. Solomon and Martha had their moments of weakness as well, no one is immune. But it’s in these moments that we should fall to our knees and ask for forgiveness and guidance to do better, and then obey. I think that we are good at the asking for forgiveness part, it’s the obeying part that has many of us miffed. We continue to make the same mistakes, over and over, not learning the lessons we are to learn. This takes obedience and resolve.
Let’s resolve today to do exactly what God is leading us to do…right now…without hesitation. It will usually be something that we would rather resist, a habit that we don’t really want to give up, but listen to your heart, it will convict you. You may feel justified in an action that you know deep down is wrong, resist it, listen to Gods leading. Pause and let your heart convict you…and then obey.
Lord, I know that my faults and failures are many, but my desire to be a Godly woman is sincere. Guide my heart today, place that conviction within me and give me a heart of obedience. Jesus, guide my steps as I encounter the people that you place before me and show them the love that you have for them, I wish to be your hands and feet , but mostly your heart. Be my heart Lord.
Reflect His Light!