Success Is God’s Will For You
Is it right for a Christian to want to be a success in life? Can we count on God to help us succeed?
Believers usually ask these questions from one of two perspectives: either they have already concluded that God does not really care about their personal success, although they still have a yearning to succeed in life or else they hope that someday God will allow them to be successful.
According to the Bible, I firmly believe that success is God’s will. I believe God desires for His people to be successful and that God not only desires this, but is 100 percent committed to helping His children become successful.
1 Samuel 18:14 (NIV) In everything he did he had great success, because the LORD was with him.
Why do some people fail to reach their God-given potential and others always seem to be able to succeed in life?
Success doesn’t happen by accident; people don’t stumble onto it by mistake. There are key factors why men and women are successful, and they leave clues behind for us to observe and collect – if we will diligently search for them and apply God’s principles for success in life.
“We make our decisions, and then our decisions turn around and make us.”
– Frank W. Boreham
Success is the opposite of failure and defeat. And success, not failure, is the will of God for you in every area of your life.
What is success for the believer? Success can be defined as knowing and accomplishing the will of God for your life. It is the progressive achievement of your God-inspired dreams and goals for your life.
2 Chronicles 26:5 (NIV) As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success.
Success is a journey, and God wants you to flourish and not fail. On the road to success here are my top five essentials…
Success Comes By Pursuing a God First Life
Living a God first life begins when we are born again by acknowledging that Jesus is the Son of God who died for our sins and rose again (Romans 10:9-10, 13). It includes complete trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, repentance from past sins, and surrender of our lives fully to Him.
It means having the reality of eternal life – and being filled with and controlled by the Holy Spirit.
There is no such thing as a part-time Christian! With the way the world is today, with things getting darker and darker and wickedness going from bad to worse, the only way to live these days is “full throttle for Christ” as a completely committed and sold-out Christian – not as a fence-sitter trying to blend in.
Joshua 24:15 (NKJV) “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
A God first life means taking your stand as a true believer who says, “Jesus is my Lord and I want to honor Him, live for Him, walk with Him, and obey His Word – I choose to live a God first life!”
Pursuing a God first life means surrendering your will to God’s will. It means choosing to please the Lord by walking in complete submission to Him. It means giving the Lord 100 percent total control of your life in every area – your decisions, time, talents, and possessions!
Pursuing a God first life means you have made a quality decision to love God FIRST, to follow God, live for God, serve God, seek God, and honor Him as a way of life.
Matthew 6:33 (NKJV) Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Pursuing a God first life means to diligently keep the Lord number one, at the center of our lives – no excuses, no playing games – in everything we do, say, and think in our present and future plans, in our finances, in our relationships and in every aspect of life.
This involves living day by day under the Lordship of Jesus, and in complete obedience to the Word of God and will of God for your life – not just once in a while or when you feel like it – but all the time.
Proverbs 3:6 (TLB) In everything you do, put God first, and He will direct you and crown your efforts with success.
The problem is that many people do not even begin to ask, “What is God’s personal will for my life?”
When your life here on earth is over, how do you want to be remembered? What do you want people to say about you?
What difference will it have made that you ever lived? What will be the message of your life?
Success Comes By Thinking Biblically
Successful people absolutely believe that they have the ability to succeed. And they will not entertain, think about, or talk about the possibilities that they’ll fail. They do not even consider the possibility of failure. Remember: You always act in a matter consistent with your beliefs.
Proverbs 4:23 (NCV) Be careful what you think, because your thoughts run your life.
The Bible says, “As a man thinks, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). Our mind is like a garden, and we are the master gardeners. Through care and diligence we can create a botanical masterpiece, or through neglect our garden can become a mass of weeds – negatives, insecurities, fears and failures.
Wrong thinking is the source of most failure and defeat. If you don’t learn to think differently, you will never live differently! The reality is: if you continue to think like you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.
As a man thinks, so is he! Your thoughts, ideas, beliefs and opinions can open the door and invite faith or failure into your life. If you give in to negative attitudes, allowing them to dwell within your mind, there is very little chance you will live a successful, happy and fulfilled life.
What we think shapes who we are! Our thoughts have the power to either help us or hurt us. The mind is the control tower of our life. That’s why the Bible tells us to be transformed by the renewing of our minds.
Romans 12:2 (NKJV) Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Life transformation is rooted in mind transformation. Where your mind goes, your life follows. Your life always moves in the direction of your most dominant thoughts (Philippians 4:8).
Our thoughts govern our relationship with God, our relationships with people, our successes, our failures, and the direction of our life. Righteousness, peace and joy – and true success in life – are the result of thinking biblically; thinking the thoughts of God (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Joshua 1:8 (AMP) This Book of the Law (God’s Word) shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.
Through daily meditation in God’s Word you are downloading Scriptures and God’s amazing promises into your mind.
“Achievement seems to be connected with action. Successful men and women keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.”
– Conrad Hilton
Think the thoughts of God by showering your mind daily with the promises of God. Give no place to worry, fear, doubt or uncertainty. Refuse to be depressed, discouraged or defeat minded.
If you feel like your life stinks, perhaps it is because of “STINKING THINKING!!”
Choose to meditate on God’s Word and think God’s thoughts. As you learn to absorb the mentality of God daily, you will move yourself in the direction of the successful life that God has planned for you.
Success Comes By Embracing Integrity
Having preached many times in Atlanta and Savannah over the years, I heard this powerful testimony, from one of my pastor friends, about a Georgia basketball coach that clearly underlines the truth that integrity is the way to win in life…
The Rockdale County High School Bulldogs basketball team of Conyers, Georgia, won their first-ever state championship in March of 1987, rolling over all their opponents. After eighteen years of coaching the team without a championship, Coach Cleveland Stroud was ecstatic.
But a few weeks after the championship game, Coach Stroud was doing a routine review of his players’ grades when he discovered that one of his third string players had failed some courses, rendering the player “academically ineligible” for the basketball team.
The struggling student was by no means a factor in the team’s victory. He was an underclassman who suited up for games but hadn’t actually seen any playing time all season.
During one of the semifinal matches, however, with the team leading by more than 20 points, Coach Stroud wanted to give every player an opportunity to participate. He had put that player in the game for less than 45 seconds.
The ineligible young man had scored no points. His participation had in no way affected the outcome of the game. But it was, technically, a violation of state eligibility standards.
Coach Stroud was in a distressing predicament. If he revealed the infraction, his team would be disqualified and stripped of their championship. If he kept quiet, it was highly unlikely anyone outside the school would ever discover the offense.
Yet the coach realized that at the very least, the player involved was aware of the breach of rules.
It was also possible that other students on the team knew and thought their coach had purposely ignored the eligibility guidelines. But more important still, Coach Stroud himself knew, and if he deliberately tried to keep the facts from coming to light, his greatest coaching victory would be forever tainted with an ugly secret.
“Character is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking. There are too many people who think that the only thing that’s right is to get by; and the only thing that’s wrong is to get caught.”
– J.C. Watts Jr.
Coach Stroud said from the moment he discovered the violation, he knew what he had to do. He never even pondered any alternatives. His priorities had been set long before this.
He realized that his team’s championship was not as important as their character. “People forget the scores of basketball games,” he said. “They don’t ever forget what you’re made of.”
He reported the infraction and forfeited the only state championship his team had ever won. But both coach and team won a far more important kind of honor than they forfeited.
They kept their integrity intact and gained an immeasurable amount of trust and respect.
Integrity is defined as steadfast adherence to sound moral or ethical principles, and doing the same as what you say. It is freedom from corrupting influences or motives, and following a strict moral or ethical code. It is the quality of being a principled person of uprightness, purity, honesty, and sincerity.
Proverbs 22:1 (MSG) A sterling reputation is better than striking it rich!
The coach was recognized with numerous teacher-of-the-year, coach-of-the-year, and citizen-of-the-year awards, as well as a formal commendation from the Georgia State Legislature. A few years later he was elected to Conyers City council.
Coach Stroud was right. People who would have long ago forgotten about the Bulldogs’ victory in the state championship have never forgotten about this coach’s integrity.
Proverbs 11:3 (NIV) The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.
We often hear architects, engineers, or builders say, “This building has structural integrity.” That is, the public beauty of a tall skyscraper relies on its private, unseen foundation that is dug deep into the earth and solidly constructed. It is that hidden life of a building that brings structural integrity.
Proverbs 20:7 (NLT) The godly walk with integrity; blessed are their children who follow them.
Personal integrity is rooted in that private life we develop alone with God in the secret, hidden place.
Success Comes By Relying on The Holy Spirit
As a child of God, the greatest secret to living a victorious and successful Christian life is your daily reliance and dependence on the person and power of the Holy Spirit as your Senior Partner in life.
Zechariah 4:6 (TLB) “Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord Almighty – you will succeed because of My Spirit.”
Jesus taught in John Chapters 14, 15, and 16, that the Holy Spirit is our “Heaven-sent Helper” and He is the One divinely assigned to be our guide, our teacher, our strengthener, our wisdom source and to equip us supernaturally with His anointing.
The anointing power of the Holy Spirit is for every Christian today – the Holy Spirit has been given to businessmen, mothers, students, doctors, plumbers, secretaries and to believers in all walks of life.
The New Testament believer is called to be filled with the Spirit; be led by the Spirit; to walk in the Spirit; live in the Spirit; worship in the Spirit; sow to the Spirit; be anointed with the Spirit, and to pray in the Spirit.
Because God wants His children to experience success in life, He equips us with the ability and anointing of the Holy Spirit.
When we yield to the Holy Spirit: He supernaturally empowers us, guides us, illuminates God’s Word to us and expresses the ways of Jesus Christ through our character, conversation, and conduct.
If the Christian life were simply a matter of trying harder or doing our best, there would be no need for God to send the Holy Spirit to help us.
John 14:26 (AMP) Jesus said, “The Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name and in My place, He will teach you all things.”
When we stop relying on the Holy Spirit to lead us, to guide us, to equip us with the spiritual power we need to live life successfully, and to give us the wisdom we need to make the right decisions… the end result is defeat and failure. We struggle, suffer setbacks, and then fail some more.
We never spiritually outgrow our dependency upon the Holy Spirit. The exact opposite is true. The more we grow in our Christian life – the more we need and must be dependent on the Holy Spirit.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: it’s impossible to live the Christian life.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot understand the Bible.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot grow spiritually.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot have God’s guidance.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot pray and get results.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot overcome the devil.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot live in victory over sin.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot boldly share the gospel.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot serve God effectively.
- Without reliance on the Holy Spirit: you cannot walk in the fear of the Lord.
The real key to reaching your maximum potential lies in trusting the Holy Spirit to help you become your very best in every area.
Never underestimate the importance of the Holy Spirit in your Christian life and never stop relying on the Holy Spirit to lead you, guide you, fill you and empower you to succeed in all that you do.
Success Comes By Tithing Intentionally
Money can be a dangerous thing in the hands of those who are not committed to the Lord Jesus Christ and who are not obeying God’s commandments (Luke 16:13). Money can be a blessed thing in the hands of those who love the Lord and seek to obey and honor Him in all things.
Deuteronomy 14:23 (TLB) The purpose of tithing is to teach you always to put God first in your lives.
Our willingness to tithe and follow God’s financial principles is a matter of trust in His Word and proof that we have conquered greed – which Jesus called “mammon.”
A lot of people when they hear biblical teaching about tithing or giving, too often they respond, “Well, I’ll tithe when I make more money.” The sad fact is that they won’t and they don’t.
What is tithing? It is regularly honoring the Lord with the first 10 percent of every dollar that crosses your hand. The tithe belongs to God as His sacred tenth portion.
Leviticus 27:30 (NIV) A tithe of everything belongs to the LORD; it is holy to the LORD.
Tithing is something you do out of your love for God, and it sends God a clear message that you are honoring Him (Proverbs 3:9).
Malachi 3:10-11 (NASB) “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the LORD of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. Then I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your labor,” says the LORD.
The Bible says that God rewards tithers in a tangible way – here are three phenomenal blessings that you can rightfully expect…
- PROMISE #1: God guarantees, “I will open for you the windows of heaven” (Malachi 3:10). Tithers can expect to live under the blessing of an open heaven and experience the abundance of God.
- PROMISE #2: God guarantees, “I will pour out for you a blessing until it overflows” (Malachi 3:10). As you honor God financially, He is going to increase the blessings in your life in wonderful ways you could never imagine.
- PROMISE #3: God guarantees, “I will rebuke the devourer (Satan the thief) on your behalf” (Malachi 3:11). Tithing is a covenant of financial security and causes the Father to supernaturally “stop the thief” and protect your income, your business, your job, your family, your investments and your possessions.
With such amazing promises, why do so many believers fail to follow God’s tithing principle today? It could be because of unbelief or a spirit of rebellion, or covetousness.
But regardless of why, the Lord says that when we fail to tithe, we are robbing Him – we are withholding what He requires – we are stealing what rightfully belongs to God (Malachi 3:8).
When we obey God, we will experience His blessing; when we don’t, we will miss out on that blessing.
Our biggest blunder: By not tithing we end up robbing ourselves. We block God’s maximum provision, put limits on the level of our prosperity and open the door for “Satan the devourer” to rip us off and steal our blessings.
Perhaps you’ve said, “But I don’t have enough to tithe from my little income.” However, the God of the Bible who multiplied the loaves and fishes can make the ninety percent we have leftover stretch further than if we kept the ten percent due Him.
Are you a tither? If not, decide today to become a committed and obedient tither, put God to the test according to Malachi 3:10-11, and trust Him with all that you have. You cannot outgive God!
Tithing faithfully will unleash maximum blessing. The Lord can change your financial situation and you will experience the benefits of God’s awesome provision.
God doesn’t need our tithes – but we definitely need His blessings, His favor, His provision and divine protection.
J. L. Kraft, the founder of Kraft Foods, knew the reality of this great tithing truth of God’s Word. He often said, “The only investments I ever made which have paid constantly increasing dividends are those I have tithed and given to the Lord’s work.”
We can never outgive God! When we tithe intentionally and honor the Lord regarding our finances, His blessings don’t just trickle in, they abundantly overflow.