True success

BethanySMC - Thursday, 1 November 2012 10:23

When we look at people around us, many times we are tempted to consider those who are wealthy, healthy, famous and seemingly happy as real models of success. Ability to set and accomplish goals, get to the top, get rich and make millions is something that is coveted and desired in our society today.

If there was a person in history that exceeded all the ancient monarchs and modern billionaires in his riches, wisdom, influence and honor – Solomon was the one. God gave him extraordinary wisdom and along with it, great success in all his ways. Kings from afar would come to see him and would be astonished, and marveled as they observed his kingdom and the level of success he achieved.

In his days, precious metals and stones lost their value for abundance of them; there were no limits to his desires and abilities to fulfill them. As it often happens, any success has the ability to drag a person into a ditch of wrong choices. Solomon was right in the middle of his success when he found himself in that ditch. When he reflects on his life in the book of Ecclesiastes, he comes to the profound conclusion that none of the things that he accomplished or achieved is able to define true success. In fact, simple living in the fear of God, following God’s commandments is the only way. It matters very little what car you drive or how big your bank account is, or how much pleasures you can afford; when Solomon came closer to the end of his life, and perhaps thinking of the account that he has to give before God, he realized how much of a failure he was, even though he gained more than anyone before or after him.

Vanity of vanities; all is vanity – he cried regarding all that he had or did. Solomon neglected his soul in the midst of earthly success. In Mt.16:26 we read the words of Jesus that reminds us of this timeless truth: For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? How painful was it for Solomon to realize that even with repentance he would not be able to undo all the damage he made to his soul; he lost time and what he made crooked could not be straightened. That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered. Ec.1:15 Yes, he could find forgiveness; however, the consequences of his errors followed Israel for many generations and perhaps even to this day.

In contrast, I want to bring Apostle Paul who lost all for Christ! He suffered a lot for His cause as he strived to please Him. He could have been a pretty successful man in the eyes of men of his time; yet, he chose to be nobody for Christ’s sake. When Paul was about to face death, he did not regret his life and the choices that he made. I can hear him saying: I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith– and now I expect a crown! 2Ti.4:7-8. Thinking of success in the light of eternity; temporary things that you may have, in no way can be compared to the glory and riches that God has prepared for those who love him. Think of Solomon, think of Apostle Paul – Whose shoes do you want to wear for life and eternity?

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