Saturday, January 7, 2023

The Key to Success in a New Year

By: Melanie Moore

It's the first week of a brand-new year! Isn't it exciting? I know many of us are busy crafting resolutions and goals for the new year in order to see big changes and success this year. My personal list of resolutions and goals tends to be quite long....

... eat better

... move more

... stress less

... save money

... share kindness

All of these can be fantastic goals and resolutions for the year, but first, I think we have to do one very important thing to ensure success. Ready? Are you with me? Have your pen poised to capture this idea as your very first priority this year?

We have to stop and ask God what He wants for this year.

What does success in our lives look like from God's perspective?

So often we look around us and notice all of the things other people are doing, and we base our idea of success on them. We start to define what being successful means by using the world's definition. However, what does God say to us about success?

I think about Joseph's life. He was hated by his brothers, despised to the point that they threw him into a pit to die! Thankfully, God spared his life.... only to have Joseph spend much of it in prison. I mean, if we stop the story right now and take of poll of how successful people think Joseph's life was, we may get some strange looks and shaking of heads that no, this is not looking like a success story.

But God...

God had other plans for Joseph to do something with his life that was far bigger than what we could imagine. Joseph demonstrated a life of integrity even while (and especially while!) so many horrible things were happening to him. 

Genesis 39:23 says of Joseph:

"the Lord was with him. And whatever he did, the Lord made it succeed"

If we want our lives to be successful according to God's definition, we must commit all we do to the Lord. His definition of success does not guarantee an easy life, riches, fame, friends, popularity, etc. However, when the Lord gives us success, he gives us success in the things that matter for eternity

I love this quote by Francis Chan and challenge you to meditate on it as you form goals for a successful 2023:

“Our greatest fear should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter.” Francis Chan, Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God

So, before we launch into a year of chasing success, friends, let's pause before God to ask him what he would have for our lives this year. As we commit this year to him, let's seek His heart most of all and surrender each minute to be used as an instrument of His love and for His glory.

I'm cheering you on from here as we define "success" together based solely on God's definition. May He bless you this year and use you greatly for His glory.

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