Set yourself up for success

I once heard someone say that he was setting himself up for success. I was intrigued and listened to what the man had to say. He talked about strategies and techniques he had but he also mentioned how his mindset was helping him. He was mostly explaining how he was always able to succeed and to do well financially. I wasn’t too interested in that part because it sounded like a major life shift that would need to take place in my life. However, I loved the idea of setting oneself up for success. How can we succeed in this world and make progress on our journey with the Lord? Success to me means knowing Jesus the best we can and representing Him the best we can. There is a way we can set ourselves up for success and be more like Jesus and help the world get to know Him. I believe that our mindset has to be reset and our disposition has to be readjusted. Today I want to encourage you to set yourself up for success. Gather all the tools you need to get closer to the Lord and to be more like Him. Glean knowledge from Him. Rely on His wisdom. Embrace His ways. Follow His lead and love like you are being loved by the creator of the universe which is the greatest truth of all.

We all have default settings that seem to be present in our lives. We are more predisposed to thinking a certain way and we have a set of values and ideas that come from our environment and from our upbringing. We form our own ideologies and belief system based on many factors. We can change our default settings and put new settings in place. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, some of our default settings change. Others need to be worked on. We need to work on our mindset and renew our minds so our thoughts can line up with the Lord’s. It is difficult to be successful on this journey with the Lord if we don’t see eye to eye with Him. It’s as if we were following our own agenda and that agenda often doesn’t jive with God’s plan. If you want to get on the road to success, check your default settings and make a change. Strip yourself off your old ways. Revise your thinking. Put it to the test. Use the Word of God as a gauge and go deep into your thinking. It is a long process that is very much worth it. Our minds are constantly bombarded with thoughts that can easily derail us and take us down the wrong road. We can take a detour into the wilderness and miss the promised land. God promised that He would never leave us nor forsake. Let’s be on the same page and recognize that our journey is not valid without Him and He is never leaving us. He is always there so our success is guaranteed as long as we keep walking hand in hand with Him.

Once we are walking in unison with the Lord, we have access to the tools He has for us. He has an array of tools that can assist us in our quest to be successful followers of His heart. It all starts with love. Love is number one. God is love and partaking in His love and distributing it is the best step toward a successful spiritual life in Him. Success is great but we also have to be reminded that we are doing it all for His glory. We shouldn’t be looking for accolades or praises. Our goal should be to make Jesus popular and let His light shine in all places. Carrying the torch and letting Him get all the glory is a sign of success. When you think Jesus first, you set yourself up for success. Not just personal success but you help spread His love and His Word and it is a win against the hatred and the animosity in the world. Do it all for Jesus. Do it all through Jesus. When you do, you put in place a powerful structure that will lead you to a life of success in Him. He adores you. Accept His love and share it with others. You will accomplish great things in His name!

Suggested reading: 1 Kings 2:3; Jeremiah 17:7; James 4:10

Key to success 

In November 2011 I met Ann Curry, former host of NBC the Today Show, at the Farmers’ market in New Canaan, CT. She goes to my friend’s coffee stand every Saturday. We ended up talking for an hour. She said that when she had met Steve Jobs, he explained that the secret to his success was the desire to create a product that no one could resist. We all want to succeed in life but what is the secret to leading a successful Christian life? One of the best answers I have found so far is in Matthew 6:33; “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Let’s always believe in God and go to Him first. Whatever we want, that is in line with the Word, will be given to us if we seek to do His will first. Let me give you a practical example. When praying, seeking His kingdom first means praying for others first. Instead of starting our prayers with “Give me, give me, give me” , we should saying “Lord, Sophia needs your help. Bless her and open the floodgates of heaven so her life will be changed for the best…Lord, please heal Cliff’s father. Nothing is impossible to you so I expect a miracle for him”. These are just examples but you get my point. Praying for others is the best prayer we can say. It surely tramples praying for a million dollars 😀. It’s displaying Jesus’ character by caring for the world. We can connect Matthew 6:33 to Psalm 37:4 that recommends to “Delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Seeking His kingdom is delighting in Him. Making Him our first love, following His example, searching His heart every day, blessing others so we are blessing Him as well. When you delight in someone you want to spend as much time as possible with them. Let’s spend more time with the Lord in prayer and adoration. A synonym of “to delight” is “to adore.” Praise and worship are great expressions of adoration. Every time we adore Him, we are seeking His kingdom. The key to success in our walk with God is to obey Him, delight in Him and follow His character. Once we continually do that, He will pour unprecedented blessings unto us. Just like Steve Jobs we have a product that no one could resist. Who wouldn’t want to lead a successful Christian life?Suggested reading: Psalm 37; Daniel 2:44; Mark 1:15