AS A CHRISTIAN, I must seek daily not to be conformed to this world and its expectations, and I can tell you, some days it isn’t an easy thing to do.
The world has pressured and placed a weight around the necks of believers to be successful. But here is the problem, that success is defined by the world’s standard. There are many definitions for success and most of them have at the root, self; basically, human achievement.
Generally, you are considered successful based on the type of car you have, the size of your home, assets and bank account, your career and academic qualifications, where you live, the clothes you wear, your fame, personal achievements and the like. As a result, so many are pressured to pursue achieving the above, making these the focus of their lives so as to receive acceptance and recognition from the world. If unable to do such, they live feeling unfulfilled and a failure, which then leads to severe depression and negative stress.
Interestingly, there are many who are successful by the world’s standards, yet they are unfulfilled, feeling like a failure, living in depression and their lives have little value to them. This reveals that success, as we know it, doesn’t mean you are enjoying life or even living.
As I sat last weekend during an International Christian Chamber of Commerce congress in Minnesota, I had a revelation as to a kingdom perspective of success. Success is living according to the will of God for your life and seeing His will fulfilled through you as His servant. Let me ask you a question you may have never asked yourself: Are you living in the will of God for your life?
It would be very painful standing before God and declaring all that you did and achieved in His name and for Him and he responds: Was that what I created you for? Was that what I asked you to do? Was that your purpose?
Do I believe in life after death? Yes, but I also believe in life before death. Philippians 1:21 states to live is Christ and to die is gain. Acts 17:28 states that in Christ we live and move and have our being.
As believers, all that we do is to be rooted in and focused on God’s will in the earth. Jesus said in John 6:38 that He came from heaven, not to do His own will but the will of God, His Father, who sent Him. As Christians, we are to model the life of Christ. If Jesus’ purpose on earth was to fulfil the will of the Father, what do you think our purpose should be?
One of the greatest limitations believers are controlled by is the fear of man. Many are crippled and paralysed to do what they know or believe is God’s will for them because they fear what others may say or fear not being like or being liked by everyone else.
As a result, their lives are boring, superficial, unfulfilled and they limit God. It’s amazing that we as believers will live in disobedience, attracting a curse over our lives because our fear of mortal, limited and sinful man is greater than our love for an everlasting, all-powerful and holy God. Isn’t it kind of crazy to pray continuously that our lives be different, yet we do the same thing over and over?
Success by the world’s standards leads to the glorification of man’s abilities, whereas success defined by the fulfilling of God’s will through us leads to God receiving all the glory. If each believer lives according to God’s will for their lives, comparison, envy and competition become irrelevant.
Am I saying it is wrong or a bad thing to achieve? No, not at all, but let your achievements be a reflection of a life dedicated and committed to fulfilling God’s will.
To renew one’s mind daily from the consistent humanist and secularist ideologies and expectations is a daunting task that seems impossible, but all things are possible through Christ as long as we submit, be humble and believe.
I leave you to ponder on this quote from Andrew Wommack: “If some of us were arrested for being Christian, there wouldn’t even be enough evidence to convict us.”
• Corey Worrell, a former Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, is director of C2J Foundation Inc., a project-based NGO focusing on social development. Email email@example.com.