Summary: Encourages the way to success by seeking God’s kingdom and righteousness first.
The Road to Successâ€¦
Intro: Any good father wants to provide a good, secure future for his children.
In fact, I know the reason many of you came to the United States was to provide a good future for your children.
And for that reason, we push our children to succeed. I believe in hard work and success. I believe that we must push our children toward success. However, we must be careful as we guide our children, to guide them in the right kind of success. And we must be careful as we seek success ourselves that we seek the right kind of success.
Jesus tells us very clearly how we can find material provision and success.
I. Seek first the kingdom of God.
A. All material provision comes from God.
DT 10:14 To the LORD your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens, the earth and everything in it.
James 1:17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
The economy changes. Success is fleeting. But when we get success through God, itâ€™s from one who â€œdoes not change like shifting shadows.â€
Just as the birdsâ€™ and the flowersâ€™ provision comes from God, so the best of things for us come from God.
Example: A Christian psychologist says in his book that when people focus on trying to find happiness, they never find it. But when they focus on their relationship with Christ, they find happiness. The same is true of material success, as long as we "run after it as the pagans" we’ll never find it. But when we give up chasing it and pursue God instead, we will material blessing too.
B. We must therefore attain success through Godâ€™s prescribed method.
1. Godâ€™s method of seeking success is to not seek it at all.
2. We must seek Godâ€”not thingsâ€¦ and he will give us the things!
PR 3:5,6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
a. God is very much interested in our trust for him. If everything he told us to do made sense, then we wouldnâ€™t have to trust him.
b. We can â€œreasonâ€ or â€œthinkâ€ together about what would make us or our children successfulâ€¦ but God says that we should not lean on our own understanding. Even when it contradicts our logic, we must trust that his ways are right.
c. In all your waysâ€”the reason so many people donâ€™t find the Christian walk working for them like it should, is they try to go about it half-heartedly. Godâ€™s ways work! But only when we follow them completely.
d. We spend so much time in life wondering where to go and what to doâ€¦ b/c life throws curveballs at us. But God promises that if we trust in him and follow his ways that he will make the way in front of us straight:
No confusing twists and turnsâ€¦
Making a road straight also meant removing obstacles in the roadway to make it travelable.
C. We cannot hold back from God, in order to attain success.
1. Church is important. If youâ€™re too busy for the House of God, youâ€™ll never find success.
Hebrews 10:25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
2. We must be willing to give ourselves and our children for the work of God! Because thatâ€™s the kingdom first!
Ex. 22:29b, â€œ"You must give me the firstborn of your sons.â€
A. God had promised Abraham successâ€¦ including land, fame, and descendents. Then he required Abraham to give him his son.
GE 22:2 Then God said, "Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about."
B. God had already promised these things to Abraham, without condition, and yet he said that it was because he did not withhold his son that he would give him the promises.
GE 22:15 The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time 16 and said, "I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me."