Success: A New Definition

Thursday, January 30, 2014

I woke up with the enemy bearing down on me. Attacking me. Thoughts of, “Why do I have to get up this early?” “Why do I still have this job?” “What have I achieved in my life?” “When can I come home and take a nap?!” Thoughts of discontentment, frustration, irritation, anger. Pressure in my mind, heart and soul. My spirit was being weighed down. I know the enemy was pursuing me. I was in his “cross-hairs.” I asked God to help me. I asked a friend to pray for me. I went through the motions of the day. I felt very sarcastic and had a bad attitude. I even wanted to cancel the Bible study that I lead. But God allowed me to go through this so he could speak to me.

Before leading the women’s Bible study, I asked God to speak, to be present and that He would be glorified. We are going the the book gods at war by Kyle Idleman. It’s a book about modern-day idolatry and how it affects our every day lives. The author talks about everyday things taking over the thrones of our hearts. This chapter was about the god of success. Studying and teaching through it, I never thought it really applied to me because I don’t feel especially successful with my life and my accomplishments.

But tonight I realized that I have been looking at success through the eyes of the world. A great job, making good money, marriage, kids, etc. All the things I feel would make me successful, I don’t have. But I’ve been looking is through the wrong lenses. Putting on the lenses of Jesus, I realized that I don’t have to live up to the world’s standards of success. Jesus is my success. Jesus says in Matthew 5:3, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.” If you realize how spiritually poor you are, and that you can’t make it in this life without Christ, you will inherit eternal life. I am blessed because I have a relationship with the One True King.

My friend Kelly let God speak through her that night and I know that He was speaking to me. She said that “we have American success ingrained in our lives and that’s what we let drive us. We need to stop living by American culture and start living by Biblical culture. We should stop complaining about where we are in life and let God use the moments where we are to build our character. How much more happy, joyful and content would we be?” (paraphrased) She hit the nail on the head and God spoke directly to my heart. All these feelings of discontentment have stemmed from numerous failed attempts of finding joy in my successes. I no longer want to live my life to get a husband, have children or getting that great job. (Although it would be great if God blessed me with these gifts.) This is what I want to live for:

  • Living for Christ
  • Knowing Christ
  • Serving Christ
  • Pleasing Christ
  • Following Christ

My new definition of success:  MAKING CHRIST MY PURPOSE!

So on Thursday night, I went to bed with a full heart knowing that my God is gracious and sufficient. And the enemy is under His feet!

Psalm 18:1-3 – I love you, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold! I call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.”

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