Saturday, June 24, 2017

Measuring Success

The world we live in measures success or failure by profits and loss, increases and decreases over last year, and projections made by an economist or mathematician using the wisdom and intelligence God gave them through a formula, equation, or calculation that God cannot be reduced to. However, as much as we might be in it, we are not of this world, and we are called to measure success based on God's economy where loss is considered gain.

If this is how God works, then we have to find a different way to determine the effectiveness of our efforts for Him and His glory.

So often we assume that what we are doing is meant to have a directly proportional impact on things or people that are external to us. But as much as we might do for others in the name of God, we simply cannot force a change or create a result in someone else's life. I can't determine my ability to parent my children well based on the choices they make. I can influence them with what I know to be true, and I can model what I know to be God's ways, but ultimately it is up to them to decide which course of action they will follow.

As I sat here thinking about the Michelle Myers' video I watched yesterday and the concept of results, I realized that the only way to determine if results are happening is through the intangible, tangible fruit God grows. And that is only possible as much as I submit to His leadership and allow Him access to every part of my life that needs an overhaul of the rocky soil and pruning in the places that are growing.

My biggest struggle is with the scale. I go up and down so much that my life looks like a yo-yo that never stops. But if instead of focusing on what the world would tell me is the measure of my success, the number on the scale, I base it on the level of joy that results from moving my body as a way of maintaining my health, then that would be a workout that gave results whether the scale moved or not. And if I keep my attention on eating what makes my body work best instead of labeling certain foods as banned, bad, or off limits, that is going to result in peace. And if I give it all I've got and pray through the decisions I need to make regarding both and do it all for His glory not accolades or abilities that only matter if I'm enrolling in a competition, that will bring both.

It's not easy to be still and let God be God. We see variables that we can manipulate to put the odds in our favor, and then get flustered when we don't get a projected or promised result. And the reality is, if we listen to the words of others that are considered experts, that is what we would expect to receive. But I would honestly much rather be content with where God has me than constantly striving after something that could drive me farther from Him because I think I did it on my own.

Maybe instead of doing things for our glory and the selfish reasons that seem to linger in our hearts, we should keep our eyes on the prizes we can't see. Because just like we'll always catch more flies with honey than vinegar, the peace - joy - and love that overflow as a result of God's grace will do more to draw others to Him than any knock off success the world markets.

Lord help us to see that the measure of our success is in the resulting fruit that You grow. Help us to trust that the work You are doing internally will manifest itself in the way we live, talk, and treat others. Help us to remember that the world's accolades are something that will rob us of the crown You have waiting for us in heaven. More than anything, we want the evidence of our efforts to be in a flourishing relationship with You. We love you. Amen.

If you would like access to the video Michelle Myers' posted that has been the source of inspiration for yesterday's post and today's, please leave a comment, connect with me on facebook, or send an email to Her words and obedience to the Lord on sharing her journey and struggles with fitness have been an enormous blessing in my life. God has used her to help me see where I fall short in an area that should be shining a light brightly for Him. Thank you Michelle for always sharing your heart and the truth in love.

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