• Jack Selcher

The Mirage of Success

I’ve played the game. I understand. You don’t want to be forgotten. You want people to remember you when you’re no longer above the grass.

Are you pursuing fame, fortune and self-oriented goals to get attention? Would having more recognition make your life better? Would having the whole world’s esteem be best?

You’ve noticed that people value who’s best and who has the most, haven’t you? They celebrate CEOs, entertainers, and accomplished athletes. Super Bowl MVPs get tons of attention. So do the rich and famous.

You know what it takes to be more than a face in the crowd. So, day by day, with the bricks of your achievements, you build a pedestal on which you can stand in the spotlight at least for a moment. Others are too busy building their own pedestals to clap for you much longer than that!

It’s common to think that what you’ve achieved is who you are. That your worth is proportional to your achievements. I once thought that way. Are you trying to write your self-worth with the ink of your accomplishments? The sad reality is that a century hence or sooner, it will prove to be disappearing ink. “No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them” (Ecclesiastes 1:11). There are a few exceptions. You probably won’t be one of them. I won’t either.

Like a mirage, success appears substantial. It seems worthy of pursuit when you imagine what it will be like to stand in the spotlight. But those who’ve stood in it the longest have discovered something else. Their accomplishments are far less fulfilling than they’d imagined. They produce a geyser of joy, not a dependable spring they can draw from next week, month, and year.

Human-defined success temporarily helps you feel more important than others. But those brief good feelings come at an awful price. How so? God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble (James 4:6). If you pursue human-defined success, you’re firing at the wrong target. God alone can pronounce a human life successful. He has the final word, not your obituary. God’s definition of success is loving Him and people in practical ways. “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8, NIV). Human-defined success is a mirage. Don’t be fooled. #freechristiandiscipleshipresources #freeevangelismresources #freechristianleadershipresources #success

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Photo: File:Desert mirage, Egypt.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

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