Success in Life - Part Two
Friends, I greet you again in the matchless name of Jesus Christ.
We are continuing with where we stopped last time: the discussion we had last week, Success in Life. And we want to conclude that discussion today. If you recall, our text was taken from Joshua 1:8:
8“This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it: for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
SUCCESS IN LIFE 2
Father, we thank you again as we come back to our discussion we started last week. We are praying now that you minister to everyone who is reading. Show them something new, something fresh and something that will lift their hearts up…show us all, Lord, how best to succeed in life, In Jesus’ Name. Amen!
I promised you last time that I will share with you two insightful and informative things that Thomas Edison…the man who invented the light bulb and many other things – what he said concerning or regarding success.
Thomas Edison said, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
Recall that I was trying to point out a very important ingredient in Success in Life. And that is “perseverance” or “patience”.
Thomas Edison also said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”
This is the secret we find in the life of the man that the whole world has come to know and admire, Abraham Lincoln. The success that this man experienced was as a result of perseverance – the kind of perseverance that is very rare. Abraham Lincoln [if you do not know] was a man who educated himself as a lawyer. And he ranks now, in both most scholars’ record and public opinion as one of the greatest presidents of the United States of America.
This is a little information about him; and it has to do with perseverance:
- Abraham Lincoln failed in business in 1831
- He was defeated for State Legislator in 1832
- He tried another business in 1833; it failed
- His fiancée died in 1835
- He had a nervous breakdown in 1836
- In 1843, he ran for Congress and was defeated
- He tried again in 1848 and was defeated
- He tried running for the Senate in 1855; he lost
- The next year (1856) he ran for vice presidency and lost
- In 1859 he ran for the senate again and was defeated
- In 1860, the man who signed his name as A Lincoln was elected the 16th president of the united states of America
How many times did he fail? But trying one more time…he experienced great success. “The difference between history’s boldest accomplishments”, somebody said, “and it’s most staggering failures is often simply the diligent will to persevere”.
Lincoln faced failures nine times. He succeeded eventually.
“I’m not bound to win,” somebody says, “but I’m bound to be true. I’m not bound to succeed but I’m bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, and stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong.”
Success in Life!
“Sir,” somebody else said, “my concern is not whether God is on our side. My greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.”
Let me conclude with what I call prescriptions for success.
To have true success in life, you must enter into a personal relationship with your Maker, God. This relationship is entered into through Jesus Christ who says in John 14:6,
“I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the father except by me”.
You come to Him in true repentance from your sins and obedient faith in His sacrifice for your sins.
In 2 Corinthians 5:21, the scripture says,
21“He [God] made Him [Jesus Christ] who knew no sin to be sin for us [you
and me] that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
Any righteousness that is not in Jesus Christ is self-righteousness – and such righteousness God says stinks in His nostrils. Isaiah 64:6a
Friend, do you have this relationship with God through Jesus Christ? Please, don’t confuse it with water baptism and church membership. Without this personal relationship baptism and church membership are meaningless for they do not have any saving power. In Acts 4:12, Peter said through the Jewish and Heathren,
“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Having entered into this relationship with God, Jesus must be your focus. This focus is what Hebrews 12:2 describes as fixing your eyes or guess on Jesus. This speaks of a life dependence on Him. Jesus, Himself, puts it differently in John 15:4 & 5 where He says,
4“Abide in Me, and I in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5I am the vine, you are the branches: He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.
Without Me you cannot succeed. The Lord is saying here that success or fruitfulness…God’s way is contingent on a life of dependence on Him for without Him, apart from Him, you can do nothing. When “God shakes up our world”, somebody says, “there is a reason” He wants us to turn loose of those things that we are depending on and clinging to for our security and turn and trust Him.
A young man in a bible study group once asked the question: why doesn’t the world believe what we Christians have to say? Then he added, I think it is because so many Christians don’t act like they believe it themselves. Then he asked the logical but thorny question, how can we make Christians believe what they believe, how can we make Christians believe what they say they believe? This is the problem with our society today. We have not succeeded in life, friends, when we have not experienced the salvation of God through Jesus Christ. We do not have success in life when, on the basis of this salvation, we are not putting Jesus on positive display. Do those around you know you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ? Have you recorded a measure of success without Christian moral principles? You have not succeeded in life.
Friend, let us pray.
Thank you father for this time and for Your precious word. We are praying, O God, that as many as have heard will succeed in life – succeed Your way. This is why our society needs: success – God’s way. Let it be so for us, O God, as we embrace Christ, as we yield to You and live honestly by Your principles and by the power of Your Spirit, in Jesus’ Name we pray. Amen.