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Monday, July 28, 2008

Devotion: Success

This past week I was in the mountains when I decided to go fishing. Having baited my hook, I tossed the line into the lake and was immediately rewarded with a good size brim. I debated whether to run to the house to document this feat with my camera, but decided that there will be plenty more opportunities to capture on film all the fish I was going to catch over the week because clearly the fish were biting and I must have been an expert having caught a fish with one cast.

Unfortunately, the remainder of the week, I spent many more hours at the water's edge, camera in hand, trying to catch a fish. It was to no avail. My early success had made it seem easy and therefore left me frustrated when I could not duplicate the same results.

Success can have that effect on us.

It can drive and motivate us to work harder, but it can also leave us feeling empty when we fail to create the same, if not better, results. We desire to be successful people. Whether it's a successful parent, or a successful student, or a successful businessperson. We want success in relationships, in sporting events, in every aspect of our life-including faith. We want our prayers to be answered; we guilt ourselves if we have not had a successful quiet time in months; we get irritated if worship did not successfully draw us into God's presence. And we have this notion that being a follower of Christ automatically makes life easier, blessed and successful.

Unfortunately, God's promise is not that we will succeed. Rather his promise is that no matter where we go-no matter how bad we fail-God will be right there beside us. He no longer judges us based on our merit, but out of his faithful love.

Lamentations 3:22-23 "Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."

In Christ,

Wes Barry

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