Do you ever wonder why God isn’t giving you “success”?
This morning I read this from Proverbs 2:7:
“He holds success in store for the upright,
he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless….”
God is the one who HOLDS success and therefore decides to whom and when to give it. Scripture assures us He gives it to the upright but it also says He is our shield and protection. Perhaps sometimes He withholds that success to protect us and keep us blameless.
Last week I shared with you five things God wants more than our success. That was by no means the end of the list. This week I’m offering you “Five More Things God Wants More Than Our Success” so you can know how to pray:
- God Wants Us to Be Like Christ.
Success isn’t the best teacher when it comes to becoming more like Christ. In fact, we can relate more to the Man of Sorrows through our disappointments, loss, pain, and even failure, as it makes us more dependent on God.
When you experience a disappointment, loss or failure, instead of asking God why He didn’t want you to succeed, ask Him “How can I become more like Christ through this?” Then you may discover His route to success.
2. God Wants Us to Walk in Newness of Life.
Sometimes we strive for success to make up for what we feel we are lacking in our lives (love, a sense of purpose, affirmation, a sense of identity or worth). Yet, God wants us to realize those things are found only in a healthy relationship with Him in which we know who we are in His eyes.
Are you desiring personal success as a fix to a wound or to compensate for something you feel you’re missing? Seek healing and wholeness in Him so you can walk in newness of life and leave the past and your old wounds behind you (2 Corinthians 5:17). That is successful living in God’s eyes.
3. God Wants Us to Be Servants.
When Jesus’ followers were arguing about which of them was the greatest, Jesus gave them a dose of reality by stripping down to His underwear and taking on the role of the household servant and washing their dirty, grimy feet. Then He told them “Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master” (John 13:14-16).
He’s the same Jesus today. Does He desire your success? Sure, if you consider success like He does – being an obedient servant of God who is willing to get dirty to help someone else. Focus on leadership as an opportunity to be a servant and you may find that God wants that kind of success for your life, too.
4. God Wants Us to Fulfill Our Calling.
Sometimes we get hung up on God’s specific will for us. And we generalize it with the statement “God wants me to be successful.” A more biblically accurate phrase would be “God wants me to be thankful and content in everything.”
In 1 Thessalonians 5:18 we are told “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Fulfill your calling by being open, teachable, and grateful for all things – painful or not – that God allows into your life. You can ask Him what He wants for you, specifically, and as you do, pray that your desires will reflect His. As His desires for your life become your desires, you will find that He delights in granting them (Psalm 37:4).
5. God Wants Our Intimacy with Him.
More important to God than our investment portfolio, our job resume, or our list of accomplishments in this life is the deepening of our union with Him. He desires intimacy with you and me and will, at times, allow whatever it takes, for us to find that depth of relationship with Him.
God’s desire for us to truly know Him is evident in Jeremiah 29:13: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” and Jeremiah 31:3: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” As you pursue intimacy with God and find that earth has nothing you desire besides Him, you will be able to say as the Psalmist did “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:26). Seek intimacy with God and you will ultimately find He is your prize and your success.
Which of these will you be praying for this week? I’d love to know in the comment section below so I can be praying for you, too.
Thank you Cindy, I’ve recently started following you and I must say, I love your writing. Your love and knowledge of our Lord is apparent.
I wasn’t brought up knowing much about God so learning about him through you, the Bible and other preachers, I am so grateful.
Please pray for me to continue growing in my faith.
Thank you, Cindy, for your kind words. I will pray for your continued growth. Scripture assures us when we pray for anything according to God’s will and desire, it will be given to us (1 John 5:14-15). And your spiritual growth is certainly His will and desire for you. 🙂
Hi my name is Shelly and the two things I’ll be praying for a 1.for filling God’s calling on my life . And second to have an intimate relationship with God.Do please praying with me.
I would be happy to pray for that for you, too, Shelly. Thanks for reading and commenting.
I feel as if I am in a windtunnel getting blown around and around. It’s not so much that I would want to be rich and successful, but I would like to live a little more comfortably. I pray every day, and I feel like maybe I am not praying right? Oh yes, I have had many prayers answered, and many not answered, and I try to be patient. Maybe I’m not living right? Not sure if prayers may not get answered because of that too. Just a little upset and confused right now.
I’m sorry for your confusion, Debbie. It helps me to reflect on Isaiah 55:8-11 when I begin to get frustrated about understanding what God is doing in my life and circumstances. That passage assures me that His ways are higher than mine and I’m not entitled to know exactly what God is doing. I’m only required to trust Him. When I am reminded that He is God and I am not and He is also one who is perfect, and therefore makes no mistakes (Psalm 18:30), that helps me trust in Him and quiet my need to have to have answers.
Thank you so much for this! I’m in the middle of some life transitions, and this article has given me great assurance of how God is speaking to me.
I’m so glad this was timely for you, Verlinda. Thank you for being a reader of mine. 🙂
I want that close intimate relationship with Him. Sometimes, I think I have it and sometimes not. I try not to let it bother me because the Lord has a greater understanding of who I am and how He made me to be.
I know what you mean, Ramona. I’ve realized through the years that God is always there and available for that relationship so I must be deliberate and intentional in making the time to focus on Him and, of course, keeping those channels of communication open with Him all day.
Thank you Cindi for this inspiring message. It has truly opened my eyes to the truth of what God desires from us, his children. My desire for this week is that I will have intimacy with God so that I may truly know Him, according to the verse in Jeremiah 29: 13.
Thank you, Pearlette. 🙂
Thank you so much woman of God, you have shine the light in me this morning and for that l am grateful. I have been by myself lately and seeking God for open door to share the gospel of Christ, my relationships and my career as a clinical chaplain and it seems like very door is close before me. I have been meditating on Isaiah 45:1-7 believing God for a mighty move because He is a Mighty God. Would please remember me “your Sister in Christ “ many blessings to your ministry and your family. My regards Chaplain Henrietta
Yes, I will remember you in prayer. Thank you, Chaplain Henrietta.
I so enjoy your messages & Scripture readings! They help me so much, many of them being favorites that I learned from a wonderful Bible teacher I had all through school!
I will be praying about all your points this week, because they all are so good, and I need them all.
Thank you again so much for your Bible study! God has blessed you with a wonderful gift!
Thank you so much, Linda. I appreciate your kind words. It’s great to hear from you again, too.
Thanks for throwing more light on this topic. It refreshes my soul and put an end to some questions I ask from time to time. It makes me to appreciate the scripture that says all things would work out together for our good. Thanks Cindi.
You’re welcome, Eunice. Thank you for your comment.
hi. thank you cindi for the sharing, my prayer is to hear GOD speaking to me and to have strong intimancy with him to know him better and increase my faith ,to depend on him and him alone.
Thank you for reading and commenting, Christine. My prayer, too, is that you grow in intimacy with God and recognize His voice. My book, Letting God Meet Your Emotional Needs may help with that.