Success 2019, January, Part 2

A Pearl to Seek

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Within every major goal there are minor ones to be met. For instance: If my goal is to run in the Boston Marathon, I might need to shed extra pounds gained over the holidays and start building my stamina by running 50 yards without dying!  After counting the cost, which didn’t take long, my choice is made. This is not a worthy goal for me.

Principle # 1: The Worthy Goal.

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“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness: and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33.

“…seek…first the kingdom of God…”

Seek, according to Vine’s Expository Dictionary, relates to an earnest striving after. This is not a passive endeavor but one we covet and strive for, a worthy goal.

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” Col. 3:1,2.

The kingdom of God:

In this world His kingdom finds its place in the heart of those where the King reigns supreme. He sits with the Father but lives in our hearts. Success in this goal manifests itself only in those where the King resides.

“And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, and said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” Matt. 18:2,3.

“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God…Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” John 3:3,5.

“And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17:20,21.

Peter and John gave testimony to their King when commanded to no longer to speak or teach in Jesus’ name.

“But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:19,20.

Peter and Paul later wrote how to succeed in seeking the kingdom of God.

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.

For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.” 1Peter 3:15-17.

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live:

yet not I, but Christ liveth in me:

and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Gal. 2:20.

If your first goal is to seek God’s kingdom, He guarantees success.

“But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.” Deut. 4:29

“I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.” Prov. 8:17.

“And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” Luke 11:9.

Two Kingdoms:

“Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.

He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man:

The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom;

but the tares are the children of the wicked one;

The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world:

and the reapers are the angels.

As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire;

so shall it be in the end of this world.

The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;

And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.

Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.” Matthew 13: 36-43.

Is seeking the Kingdom of God a worthy goal? Jesus gives us the answer.

“Again the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls;

Who when he had found one pearl of great price,

went and sold all that he had and bought it.” Matt. 13:45,46.

The spiritual principles God’s word gives for success guide us to worthy goals in all of life but must begin with the spiritual to bring true success. The principles listed in this series are in no way comprehensive but a good place to start. Are you ready for true success?

Count the cost. Make the choice. Keep focused on the goal. If it is the kingdom of God, you have found the pearl of great price. God will bring you to success.


 Join us next week for Success, January, Part 3.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Success 2019! January, Part 1

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Are you a goal setter? Did you set or reach any of your goals for 2018? What stood in your way or helped you on your way?

Many set short-term goals to encourage them in meeting long-term goals, realizing the process of success is found in counting the cost, taking one step at a time, and keeping focused.

COUNTING THE COST:  Determining the worth, time, and reward of success in meeting your goal.

Jesus taught this principle, in Luke 14:28-35, to the multitudes when he set the goal of discipleship before them.

“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?

Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.”

Jesus continues with the illustration of a king going to war and then the conclusion.

“So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.”

ONE STEP AT A TIME: To reach the end you must begin at the beginning, choosing to pay the cost.

Ruth, the Psalmist, and Moses are three, of many, biblical examples who made the choice.

Ruth:

“And Ruth said,

Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee:

for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge;

thy people, shall be my people, and thy God my God:” Ruth 1:16.

She counted the cost, made the choice, and never looked back.

The Psalmist:

“I have chosen thy way of truth: thy judgments have I laid before me. I have stuck unto thy testimonies; O LORD, put me not to shame. I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart.” Psalm 119:30-32.

In choosing, the Psalmist recognized success depended on God’s word and work in his heart.

Moses:

“By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;

choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;

esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt:

for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.” Hebrews 11:24-26.

Moses made his choice and completed his goal keeping before him the worth of his goal.

KEEPING FOCUSED: The cost counted, the choice made, now comes persevering to the end.

Paul and Jesus show us how to attain success through keeping focused.

Paul:

“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do,

forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,

I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 3:13, 14.

Jesus:

“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses,

let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.” Hebrews 12:1-4.

One final thought: Are your goals worthy?

Jesus made plain the truly worthy goals.

“Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for the meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you; for him hath God the Father sealed.” John 6:27.

If you are given this year of 2019, how do plan to succeed in meeting your goals? Have you counted the cost and made your choice? How will you persevere to success? How do you define success?


By God’s grace and direction one goal I hope to achieve begins with this post. Each month I will introduce a principle of success as seen in God’s word. My plan is to post Success 2019 once a week. I also plan to keep working on the Walking with Jesus series posting once a week . The purpose of these goals is to encourage and strengthen us in the word of God as we travel through this new year. Join me next week for Success 2019, January, Part 2. And may all bring honor and glory to our King in 2019.