At a recent PK Friday morning online men’s discussion group, this question was discussed, “Is there a difference between success and significance?” It is a question we all have to answer, and we also need to ask the question, “How does that play out in my life, today?”
When I was 14 years of age, I locked in a “foundational lie” in my life that to be accepted, to be attractive to women, one had to be wealthy and successful. It started me on a journey to make a fortune with limited parameters of control, as the end goal was to be accepted. At 15 years of age, I had determined the road map to this goal was to pursue a career in senior business management and at 18 I started my training as an accountant, being the stepping stone to management and money.
In Ecclesiastes 4:8 we read, There was a man all alone; he had neither son nor brother. There was no end to his toil, yet his eyes were not content with his wealth. “For whom am I toiling,” he asked, “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?” This too is meaningless – a miserable business!
Before starting work, my worldview had brought me no peace or satisfaction – there was a poverty in my experience. Still controlled by the “foundational lie”, my pursuit had not changed until I was born again at 25 years of age. The first thing that the Lord challenged me on was the love of money, the foundation stone of my “foundational lie”. Over the next year the Lord transformed my thinking, setting me free from this lie and moving me on into the revelation that my significance is in Him alone, not on my successes or otherwise.
The Bible raises discussion on ‘success’ and ‘significance’ in using the words ‘wealth’ and ‘riches’.
If we look at dictionary definitions, we see:
Success – is having a great deal of money, resources, or assets; the attainment of fame, wealth, or social status.
Wealth – is an abundance of valuable possessions or money.
Significance – is the quality of being worthy of attention; importance.
Richness – is the quality of being pleasingly deep or strong.
Look at these interesting scriptures:
Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless.
God gives some people wealth, possessions and honour, so that they lack nothing their hearts desire, but God does not grant them the ability to enjoy them, and strangers enjoy them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil.
The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful.
You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realise that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.
My experience shows me that these financial entrapments in these areas will act as idolatry in your life. They will block God’s road map for you towards His plan of significance and richness of experience.
I have found that pursuing the presence of God, dwelling in His Word, and soaking in worship has allowed me to experience significant spiritual and personal growth. I encourage you to pursue active and vital relationships in the life of the Church and with a few godly men. Thus allowing the Holy Spirit to continue your passage of transformation - an ongoing journey into profound significance and wealth of experience, right up to the day you breathe your last breath.
I have experienced a depth I never expected, what about you?