What if I told you that you can be successful all of the time? Would you believe me? No? I don’t blame you. If you had told me that I could be successful 100% of the time a few months ago I wouldn’t have believed you. I would have laughed at you and kept laughing while I walked away.
Why? Because most of us know that failure is a part of life. Just look around you. You see failed relationships, businesses, investments, and careers. You name it, and someone has probably failed at it.
So, how can I believe in a 100% success rate? The truth is that I read something a while back that changed my perspective on success. Mark Batterson said in his book Chase the Lion, “Success isn’t winning or losing; it’s obeying” (p. 100).
So, what if you stopped defining success as the absence of failure and started defining it as obedience to God?
Doesn’t that radically change your view of success? Your life stops being about either/or scenarios – winning or losing, overcoming or being defeated, achieving or failing. I could go on, but you get my point.
Your focus shifts from performance – what I can do to gain love, respect, honor, and worth – to trust. You begin to understand who God really is at His core. He is good, faithful, and loving. He sent His son, Jesus, to live a perfect, sinless life so that He could take the penalty of our sin which is death and eternal separation from God the Father. Three days after his death on a cross, He rose defeating sin and death. Without Christ’s obedience, we would still be trying to earn our way back into a right relationship with God which is impossible. In light of this truth, you begin to understand who you are and what life is actually about.
"Without Christ’s obedience, we would still be trying to earn our way back into a right relationship with God which is impossible."
Take advice from someone who used to think that love was earned by what she did. (And that was after I became a follower of Jesus.) Stop measuring success by what you can achieve and just say “yes” to what God asks of you. It might be the most uncomfortable, difficult, and down-right scary thing you have ever done. Or it might not be.
Either way, it’s worth it.
Batterson, M. (2016). Chase the lion: if your dream doesn’t scare you, it’s too small. CO Springs, CO: Multnomah.