by Sandy Kirby Quandt
When we measure success, ours or others, what standard do we use to measure it?
Is success wealth? Fame? Power?
Is it accomplishing something we strive for?
Is it being faithful to what God calls us to, regardless of the outcome?
Webster’s dictionary defines success as:
the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame
the correct or desired result of an attempt
someone or something that is successful : a person or thing that succeeds
Writer Arnold H. Glasow defines success this way. Success is simple. Do what’s right, the right way, at the right time.
Recently, I thought about some of the prophets in the Old Testament. Not many of them would be considered successful by today’s standards; and many were not considered successful during the time God used them to turn his people back to them.
God sent these men to warn a rebellious nation of his impending judgement if they continued to refused to turn back to him. Not exactly a message that rebellious nation cared to hear. God called his people stubborn and hardheaded. That doesn’t sound like people willing to listen to anything a prophet had to tell them.
The prophets were called to give God’s message to the people, whether the people listened or not. The measure of their success was not dependent on how well the people responded. Their success was measured on how well the prophets obeyed God.
Our true success will not be measured by how others respond to us, our accumulation of wealth, or any accolades which may be heaped upon us. Nope. Our true success will be measured by how faithful we are to do what God calls us to do.
So I ask again. How do we measure success?
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Ezekiel, I am sending you to the people of Israel. They are just like their ancestors who rebelled against me and refused to stop. They are stubborn and hardheaded. But I, the Lord God, have chosen you to tell them what I say. Those rebels may not even listen, but at least they will know that a prophet has come to them. Don’t be afraid of them or of anything they say. You may think you’re in the middle of a thorn patch or a bunch of scorpions. But be brave and preach my message to them, whether they choose to listen or not. Ezekiel 2:3-7 (CEV)
I wish you well.
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