I SAY we’re asking the wrong question. Success is too subjective, and for some, an incapacitating pressure. I want a renewed way of thinking.
LIVING in a culture that idolizes celebrities & encourages materialism can really do a number on our souls. This mentality permeates our schools, our business, and our parenting. The word itself is harmless, until it’s twisted and abused. The “Strive for success!” way of thinking can turn into a greed mentality that occupies our hearts and eventually control our actions.
IF WE cling to this delusional mentality, there’s a chance we’ll end up suicidal, in debt, or worse.
I DID find one definition of success I appreciate: “Success is doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.” Jim Rohn
Does the word “ordinary” bore you? Does it burst your dreams? In whose eyes are you plain and ordinary?
GOD is the Author of all divinely good works that may seem ordinary to us only because we lack spiritual eyes and ears.
True, God deserves ALL the glory, so give it to Him on bended knee. But He also delights in giving us the honor of doing something that benefits people.
The key: benefiting others
Discovering a cure
Building an orphanage
Raising an autistic child
Adopting unwanted youth
Enduring a sickness so you can encourage others going through the same pain
Surviving a job loss or an infidelity so you can walk others through the that painful process and into victory.
Or how about, out of a heart of love and compassion, mopping up after the elderly who have lost control of bodily functions. How ordinary! How ‘unfitting’ for someone of ‘noble’ stature. ⇐Although it’s never voiced, isn’t this how a success-driven, image-obsessed culture views such a position?
A rescuer: Moses at age 80, had committed murder
A humble teenage mom: Mary raised the Son of God
A rough-around-the-edges fisherman: Peter the Apostle
A courageous messenger: Isaiah, told it how it was.
>A pave-the-way guy: John the Baptist, walked around in fur, eating bugs
>The first music therapist: David the shepherd boy ministered to King Saul. David never strove to become king
>A model worshiper: Mary “wasted” a year’s wages worth of perfume just to cleanse the feet of Jesus. On top of that, she stooped even lower and dried the Savior’s feet with her hair (her glory). Would she have done that if her hair was loaded with expensive hair products?
Ananias who? Some dude from Damascus, with utmost courage, sought out the greatest persecutor of Christians. He not only laid hands on Saul/Paul to pray for him, but he called him brother. “Lord Jesus sent me that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Ananias didn’t know the infamous Saul was going to become the Apostle Paul.
Wow! To be a part of something so adventurous … without striving for it. Just being obedient to God and loving whoever He puts in your path.
A military leader. Cornelius was simply a Gentile with a good reputation. Out of obedience, he requested Peter come tell him and his family and close friends about the Jewish Messiah and salvation—God used Cornelius’s obedience to save and empower dozens if not hundreds. Is THAT not history-making success?
ALL OF THE ABOVE EXAMPLES WERE ORDINARY PEOPLE
RETHINK! When we begin to believe, “I am great! Powerful. Famous. Irreplaceable” may we be humbled by the fact that God once used a donkey as His mouthpiece. If we don’t sing God’s praises, the rocks and trees will. Don’t be out done by a donkey or a tree.
CHILLAX! Are we striving to be something because the world says brand yourself? Make a name for yourself? Become important so PEOPLE recognize you? That’s a lot of unhealthy pressure to place on ourselves. And on our kids.
God WANTS to give you the honor of doing something amazing; that’s why He created you. But striving through human strength will only turn you into a self-made success that must then be maintained by YOU, which is beyond our wisely designed capability.
We’ve got to be okay with being ordinary and letting God work through us to bring about the unexpected and extraordinary outcome that will be recognized in Heaven — where our deeds truly matter.
Use the comment section below and tell about your favorite “ordinary” person in our contemporary world.