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Are You Successful?

 What is success? Most people define success in terms of achieving goals, acquiring wealth, and having prestige, favor, status, and power. “Successful” people enjoy the “good life” – being financially secure, emotionally secure, being surrounded by admirers, and enjoying the fruits of their labor. Their example is emulated and their accomplishments are noticed. Most people’s definitions of success only deal with the “here and now” of this life. Even in many churches today the definition of success is in terms of numbers, size, dollars and prestige.

But success is measured and defined differently by God. God’s measure of success involves our obedience and faithfulness to Him, regardless of opposition and personal cost. His measure of success is whether or not we are being loyal to Him in our personal relationship with Him and in our life, and whether we are accomplishing His goals & purposes for our life. Some examples in the Bible: Jeremiah was an failure when judged by people’s definition of success. For 40 years he served as God’s spokesman, but when he spoke no one listened and responded. He was rejected by his neighbors, his family, the priests and prophets, friends, his audiences, and the kings. He was poor and underwent severe deprivation to deliver God’s messages. He was thrown into prison and into a cistern. But in God’s eyes he was a success. He faithfully and courageously proclaimed God’s word and His messages, and he was obedient to his calling.

Jesus was also a failure, if you measure his life here on earth by people’s measure of success. He had little in material possessions, and did not even own a home. He was rejected by most people, and was even hated by some. The religious leaders of the time despised him. Even his friends and those closest to him deserted him. He was accused and found guilty of things he did not do. He was beaten, spit on, cursed, mocked, and he suffered terribly and died the most horrible kind of death known to man at that time, death on the cross. Measure him by the way most of us measure success, and he was a failure. But in God’s eyes, the redemption and salvation of all of mankind was accomplished through His son Jesus. By God’s grace and great love for you and I, He sent Jesus to pay for our sins, and now the gift of a restored personal relationship with God and eternal life can be ours – all because of Jesus Christ.

“God’s call is for you to be his loyal friend, to accomplish His purposes and goals for your life” – Oswald Chambers

“Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves… but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant…” – 2 Corinthians 3:4-6

“Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16

“Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them” – Matthew 7: 20


One comment on “Are You Successful?

  1. From where I sit, PJ, I like these sorts of messages! They can get under my skin! grrrrrrr

    We had a visiting Pastor come and minister to us along those lines some years ago.

    He asked a question: “Can some of you stand up in this room here and now and tell us about 3 “Godly” blessings you experienced today?”

    Of course, many hands went up and he called on just a couple 2 or 3 to stand up and count out what they perceived the blessing of God was or blessings were that they experienced that day.

    None of these that he called upon got up and said anything about a bad experience like their car running out of gas or having to deal with a creditor because of a late payment they were putting a demand upon them to pay up or having someone curse them or or or! No, everyone got up and relayed something positive that they experienced and identified that as a blessing of the Lord.

    He made his point that we generally associate God’s Blessings with the positive experiences of the day all the while not counting it all joy when we fall into various temptations or experiencing tribulations that produce patience and endurance and character and hope that develop His Faith within our soul which is more precious than Gold!

    I am going to cite just one King of the Kings of David and proffer that this man died successfully fitting into the mold of a success!

    When Matthew makes up the flow chart of the bloodline of Jesus we read this: Mat 1:10 and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos, and Amos the father of Josiah,

    Now, here is a bit of background to Manasseh the father of Amos, both were used to carry forth the “seed” of the woman that would come and crush the serpent’s head:

    2Ch 33:1 Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem.
    2Ch 33:2 And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD drove out before the people of Israel.

    I highly recommend you go to that chapter and read all the verses between those verses and these:::>

    2Ch 33:10 The LORD spoke to Manasseh and to his people, but they paid no attention.
    2Ch 33:11 Therefore the LORD brought upon them the commanders of the army of the king of Assyria, who captured Manasseh with hooks and bound him with chains of bronze and brought him to Babylon.
    2Ch 33:12 And when he was in distress, he entreated the favor of the LORD his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers.
    2Ch 33:13 He prayed to him, and God was moved by his entreaty and heard his plea and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD was God.

    Most people would think one is successful if they can claim they were used by God in being of the bloodline of King Jesus, the son of King David? I would think it would be a noteworthy success story to tell about you?

    Or if you happen to be one of those when you prayed to God, God is moved by your entreaty and then hears your plea and answer your prayer!

    But how many of you find it rather difficult to read the story of Manasseh and understand the abundance of Grace and Mercy that was shown to him realizing God’s Grace and Mercy is also available to anyone who wears similar shoes as King Manasseh, a man the Bible reveals did what was evil in the sight of the Lord according to the abominations of the nations?

    That picture says it all! And the question applied: Are you successful?

    I would turn the question around and ask, rather, “just how successful is God in redeeming our wretched soul from ourselves? To me, that would be a better success story to tell those sitting in darkness and the shadow of death!

    Mat 4:13 And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali,
    Mat 4:14 so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
    Mat 4:15 “The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles–
    Mat 4:16 the people dwelling in darkness have seen a great light, and for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned.”
    Mat 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”


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