Success is a deadly trap

There is so much on the shoulders of Pastors today.

Their job description is an endless list:

A Spiritual leader
A Shepherd of the flock
A Visionary
A Strategist
A Bible Teacher
A Business Manager
An Accountant
A Financial Advisor
An Office Manager
A Counsellor
…and the list goes on…

The pressure is real.

With these expectations come unattainable goals of success. It’s no wonder Pastors feel overwhelmed, and often feel like a failure.

We need to come back to God’s definition of success.

The Bible’s Definition of Success

The word “success” only occurs once in the Kings James Bible. We find it in Joshua 1:8

This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.

The word success comes from the Hebrew word sakal. It means to have understanding, to be prudent, and wise. God promised Joshua that he would have success if Joshua faithfully followed God’s instructions.

In the world, success is getting ahead, being better than everyone else, having more money, power and influence. But that is not God’s definition of success.

God’s definition of success

1. God’s definition of success is the fulfilment of His purpose for your life.

Success in God’s perspective is finding and fulfilling God’s purpose for your life. It means becoming the person God wants you to be for this present time and eternity. Ultimately, it is about God’s approval and commendation.

What is God’s primary purpose for your life? Have you found it? Have you been diligent and consistent in fulfilling His purpose?

Pastor, it doesn’t matter if you have 50, 100, 500 or 10,000 people in your church. God didn’t call you to have a big church. He called you to follow Him.

Don’t fall into the enemy’s trap of comparison. Success is not dependent on numbers. It is about fulfilling His purpose.

2. Success is to be like Him.

God’s goal for us is to be holy like He is holy. His goal is for Christ to be formed in us.

Jesus came to serve. He washed His disciples’ feet, ate with tax collectors, endured persecution, rejection and died. God’s definition of success is upside-down from this world’s. The way up is down.

Instead of climbing the ladder of success, descend down and spend time knowing of Him. Let God purge us of pride, greed, the desires for promotion, recognition and fame, and fill us with Himself.

Success without transformation is deception. God’s greatest work needs to be done in us before it can be done through us.

Remember this

God is not interested in what you accomplish. He is interested in who you are becoming.

God is not interested in power. He is interested in intimacy, relationship with you and me.

God is not interested in material possession. He is interested in weakness of disposition, where His strength is made perfect.

God is not interested in personal charisma. He is interested in perfecting our character.

Put on God’s perspective

Pastor, take time to re-evaluate your view of success.

Measure it against God’s definitions of success, and find your security in the One who called you.


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