Have you ever set a goal for yourself of what you wanted to achieve to be successful, reached that goal, and then after some time passed by, you still felt as though you were not successful? This has happened to me so many times in life that I have lost count of every instance. What I came to realize is that it all comes down to how you define your own success. Is your success defined by where you are in life right now career wise? Is it defined by your financial status? Is your level of education or how many degrees you have an indicator of your success? Is your success equated to the car you drive, the clothes you wear, the amount of times you travel to new places throughout the year, the fun experiences that you have, the people you know, or the followers you have on social media? Take a moment to think about it, what do you believe you need to have or where do you believe you need to be in life to truly consider yourself to be successful?
In the book of Ecclesiastes King Solomon intentionally goes on a trivial pursuit for things in life like wisdom, pleasure, career, and wealth, only to reveal that they are all like chasing after the wind. These things appear to be tangible to the human eye but once you try to take hold or grab them, there is nothing actually there.
- 16 I said to myself, “Look, I am wiser than any of the kings who ruled in Jerusalem before me. I have greater wisdom and knowledge than any of them.” 17 So I set out to learn everything from wisdom to madness and folly. But I learned firsthand that pursuing all this is like chasing the wind. (Ecclesiastes 1:16-17 NLT).
- 1 I said to myself, “Come on, let’s try pleasure. Let’s look for the ‘good things’ in life.” But I found that this, too, was meaningless. 2 So I said, “Laughter is silly. What good does it do to seek pleasure?” 3 After much thought, I decided to cheer myself with wine. And while still seeking wisdom, I clutched at foolishness. In this way, I tried to experience the only happiness most people find during their brief life in this world. 4 I also tried to find meaning by building huge homes for myself and by planting beautiful vineyards. 5 I made gardens and parks, filling them with all kinds of fruit trees. 6 I built reservoirs to collect the water to irrigate my many flourishing groves (Ecclesiastes 2:1-6 NLT).
- 18 I came to hate all my hard work here on earth, for I must leave to others everything I have earned. 19 And who can tell whether my successors will be wise or foolish? Yet they will control everything I have gained by my skill and hard work under the sun. How meaningless!...... 21 Some people work wisely with knowledge and skill, then must leave the fruit of their efforts to someone who hasn’t worked for it. This, too, is meaningless, a great tragedy (Ecclesiastes 2:18-19, 21 NLT).
This month, know that you are successful by recognizing that your success is a gift from God. Let it be measured by the way you serve and honor Him daily. Be a vessel here on earth for God by leaving footprints of faith and inspiration wherever you may go. Learn to be content with exactly where God has you in life (Ecclesiastes 2:12-13 NLT). Follow and stay focused on God placing all your trust in Him, so then, you will be able to always succeed in whatever you do or wherever you may go (1 Kings 2:3 NCV). Remember that God is the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in Him and He remains in you, you will bear much fruit; but apart from Him, you can do nothing (John 15:5 NLT).
With praise we lift up your name today, glorifying you for your unconditional love, your patience, your mercy, and your goodness day after day. You are our source that provides all our needs. For this and so much more we honor you, we adore you, we love you, and we thank you. Burn away anything standing in the way of our relationship with you and wash away our sins. Continue to be our mind regulator and purify our hearts. God teach us how to recognize the false facades of success that the world has created so that we do not become wind chasers. Keep us chasing after you, keep us craving for more and more of you. Let us never forget that you are our satisfaction and success is a gift from you. Apart from you life is meaningless, apart from you, we can do nothing so keep us in constant relationship with you. Help us remain focused on you as we continuously strive to become better versions of ourselves, serve you, and actively be vessels here on earth for you. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.