Summary: Ingredients of True Success PHILLIPIANS 3:12-14 12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to
Ingredients of True Success
PHILLIPIANS 3:12-14 12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
INTRO: I know no one who has ever entered life desiring to be a failure…desiring to miss the mark. I heard no one in my graduating class sit there during a commencement exercise of which I have been in two and say, why is the speaker encouraging us to succeed I want to fail!!! We should have an “unmotivational” speaker address us. I suppose that would entail simply lying on a couch in front of slouching apathetic observers and drifting off into a lazy slumber.
There is something placed within our hearts that drives us to set goals and pursue them. Priority lists are created almost from birth. Some one looks into a bassinette and says look at those hands …gonna be a basketball player! They looked at me at me and said, “Oh look, he is already dribbling…” These plans are edited and re-done throughout our lives. Family have goals for us. Friends have goals for us. We develop our own goals sometimes at odds with everyone else. Nevertheless, we are driven…pulled…motivated…towards a goal.
I believe God has placed that in us as a propulsion system to cause us to seek Him. Unfortunately, there are other things that can detour us. Nothing is more tragic is misappropriating that divine propulsion and wasting it on things that do not endure and that ultimately cannot fulfill.
A. PRIORITY – Establish God’s claim upon your life.
There is a cluster of priorities which follow quickly one upon another in establishing a successful Christian life:
1. Born again (John 3)
2. Baptized in water (Matt 28)
3. Filled with Spirit (Acts 2:4)
4. Committed to a local church body (Heb 13;Eph 4)
5. Seeking first the Kingdom (Matt 5,6; Rom 12)
a. Study of Scripture is vital
b. Prayer is vital
c. Transformed value system
B. HUMILTY …not that I have already attained
…not that I have been completed or arrived
1. Willingness to be taught
2. Thinking realistically of oneself
C. SUBMISSION …Christ Jesus took a hold of me…
1. Surrendering sense of "self" determination
2. Bowing before one who is superior
3. Realizing that I belong to someone else
D. FORGETFULNESS…forgetting what is behind
…..willing to forget the failures…learn the lesson and get over it
1. John Maxwell compiled a book entitled "Failing Forward" and that is a touch concept for us to grasp because our love and acceptance is performance based. God’s love is character based...based upon His character and choices
2. Letting failure go is a part of forgiveness and deriving something useful from it is a part of God’s grace at operation in our lives.
…willing to forget the successes (one of our greatest foes to future success is present success)
1. We tend to want to coast and live off of that thing done well
2. Success can be a hurdle to greater success as it blinds us to what can still be
E. INTENSITY…I press on toward the goal to win the prize
1. There needs to be a sense of ’pressing’ within us. It is a passion or stong pressure that leads us onward
2. lack of intensity leaves us on the sideline rather than participating in the game
3. Great athletes play while injured and dealing with pain.
F. FOCUS…heavenward…ALWAYS LOOK UP…ALWAYS CONSIDER CHRIST IN ALL YOU DO
1. Focus makes a tiny little light bulb magnify its lumen intensity.
2. Focus brings direction to a golf ball, a bowling ball, a touchdown pass
3. Focus fixed upon a distant point allows for straight furrows or straight lines across the outfield grass of a ball field
CONCLUSION: These five things PRIORITY, HUMILITY, SUBMISSION, FORGETFULLNESS, INTENSITY, FOCUS are vital ingredients of success in any field. When they are bound to and directed towards Christ and the high prize that he places before us - they lead us to a TRUE success. Eternal in value and everlasting in consequence.