Have you ever stopped to consider that success might be dangerous? Who doesn’t like to be successful? I mean think about it. Who shows up the DMV and hopes to fail their drivers test? When was the last time a guy asked out a girl and hoped she would say no? Nobody applies for a job hoping not to get it. We all desire success. We want to past the test or get the job. We want the girl to say yes.

However, most of us have experienced failure (some more serious than others). While it seems like most people are quick to think about their failures and find some glimmer of good in the midst of the disappointment, most of us don’t give our successes much thought. We stop to ask all sorts of questions when we fail. Where did I go wrong? What could I have done differently? Why didn’t I get the past up for the promotion? Just to name a few. But it seems like we just take our successes for granted.

So here is why I think that success can be dangerous: It causes us to think too highly of ourselves and forget the grace of God. We achieve some accomplishment and forget that if it was not for God’s being for us, we would have failed. Most of us probably don’t think much of Psalm 127

Unless the Lord builds the house,
    those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
    the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early
    and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
    for he gives to his beloved sleep. (Psalm 127:1-2)

Or think about the story of David and Goliath? Can you image how different the story would be if David attributed his success to his amazing skill with a sling and a stone? Yet David finds courage to face the giant not in his own skill, but in the provision of God. God had delivered him from the lion and the bear, so surely he could deliver him from Goliath. The battle would not be dependent on ultimately on his skill, but on God’s fighting for him.

So the next time your face with a challenge, remember to entrust your success (or failure) to the One who controls all things. And if he blesses your endeavor and you find success take some time to reflect on His grace and His provision. Ask your self some questions: Who am I that he has blessed me with this success? What has God done to prepare me to be successful in this moment? Does success mean a new stewardship to be responsible for?  Bottom line: We usually have no problems running to God in our failures, may He show us how to run to Him in our successes as well.

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