And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.” Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing. (Luke 12:15, 23) ~~ Life is not ALL about success. Those are fairly heretical words for most of us men, men trying to ascend, men for whom success in careers, success in raising kids, or success in just looking successful have become so important. Planning for success, working for it, worrying about it; dominates our everyday lives. And I mean, look around… How could life NOT be all about success? Well, it’s not! Our King, Jesus Christ teaches us that it’s not.
“Life is not defined by what you have, even when you have a lot” (Luke 12:15 MSG).
Now, make no mistake, life is partially about success – we’ve got to spend our lives for something, and we should do that something as well as we can. So we must not forget success entirely. We just can’t make it the ultimate thing. “If you are too obsessed with success, you’ll forget to live,” wrote Thomas Merton. When we focus all, or even most of our lives on achieving success and obtaining things as fruits of that success, we fall short of the full life Jesus promises in John 10:10. We miss those parts of life where we’re meant to devote to the success of others.
How many of us sacrifice huge portions of the lives we’re meant to live – loving wives; spending time with the kids; eating meals with families; hanging out with friend; helping people in need – spending too much time on our own success? How many of us are unavailable to those who need us the most, whose lives are enriched by us – and who’ll enrich ours right back? Is it worth those 12 hour work days and long nights at the computer? Are you REALLY doing it for your family or are you doing it for your career so you can have that title, that corner office and those corporate perks? Sure, you can say you have nice houses and cars and a heft bank account and your family has all of the benefits of those things like vacations and the best schools (you get it)… but do they have YOU?
Success Without Living Life is… Failure!