God’s Presence – sure formula for success
We are ready to pay any price to succeed in our life. However, not everyone is successful. Some are blessed with resources to fight their battles, but some don’t have that privilege. Though success is very much a relative term, many have started to benchmark success with becoming wealthy, powerful and having lots of fame. By chasing success, many have failed to enjoy the good life that God had given them.
How should Christians look at success?
The Bible unequivocally tells us in many places that real success comes only from God. Since our success is from God, we should not chase success as the unbelievers do.
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart – Psalms 37:4
Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans – Proverbs 16:3
Is success only for the wise, the strong and the rich?
Joseph, the eleventh son of Jacob, was a naïve lad who did nothing but dream and share his dreams with this brothers and father. But when Joseph was sent to enquire of his brothers, they stripped him of his robe and ornaments and sold him to Midianites who finally sold him to Potiphar, one of King Pharaoh’s official. Life treated Joseph very badly.
But something wonderful happened in Potiphar’s house. Genesis 39:2 says that the Lord was with Joseph and he prospered and found favor in Potiphar’s eyes. Joseph was just a slave, but when Potiphar saw that the Lord was with Joseph, he made him in charge of his entire household and left everything in his supervision except the food that he ate.
Soon, Joseph ended up in prison because of Potiphar wife’s false accusations. Genesis 39:20,11 says that while Joseph was in prison, the Lord was with him and made him find favor in the eyes of the prison warden. When the prison warden discovered that the Lord was with Joseph, he put the entire prison under his in-charge.
When the appointed time came, God gave a dream to Pharaoh but its meaning to Joseph. We read in Gen 40:39 that when Pharaoh found that God was with Joseph and he was the right person to save them from famine, he appointed him in charge of the whole land of Egypt and he was next only to Pharaoh.
When we look at how Joseph grew from being a father’s boy to a Pharaoh’s minister, his story is woven with the presence of the Lord. At every destination, be it pit or Potiphar’s place or prison or palace, the Lord was with Joseph. The Bible repeatedly talks about three things which happened when the Lord was with Joseph.
- He Prospered
- Found favor with people
- Succeeded in his endeavors
Even when adversity struck Joseph very badly, it did not affect him because God was with him. God presence change his adversity into an opportunity. He acted as the executive director of Potiphar’s house, King’s prison and finally the whole Kingdom. It all happened because God was with Joseph. In the entire rags to riches story, the Bible just cites that God was with Joseph and He prospered.
God’s presence – deciding factor to success and blessings
If we read the Bible carefully, it teaches us that we need to seek the presence of God more than anything. Whoever understand this truth is the richest person on this earth. The first and foremost thing that Adam missed when he sinned was the beautiful and refreshing time with God in the garden of Eden. When we seek God and his Kingdom, everything else will be given to us (Matt 6:33). Our blessing and success are just by-products of being in his presence.
It was the presence of God that guided the people of God when they left Israel. Exodus 33:14 says, it is the presence of God that gives us rest even when we walk through the wilderness. God knew that it was his presence that his people required and decided to make his dwelling among them (Exodus 25:8). God so loved us that he did not stop there, but we find in John 1:14 that God (Jesus) became flesh and made his dwelling amongst us. There is no greater secret or miracle in this entire world since its creation or till its end.
We read that David was always victorious because he sought the Lord’s Presence. He never went to battle alone. Even when he sinned, his biggest fear was his separation from God’s presence. He cries in Psalms 51:11 – Don’t cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. David knew the secret of seeking God’s presence early in the morning before he did anything (Ps 63:1, 57:8). No one had tasted more success than David. God calls David a man after his own heart (Acts 13:22).
David and Joseph are only a few examples from the Bible who knew how to succeed in Life by seeking God’s presence. Many miss this truth and run after so many things. Even the many mature Christians miss the mark by holding on to the promises of God’s which are vain words without Jesus (2 Cor 1:20). There is no defeat in the presence of God. On the contrary, we are prone to all kinds of attack without the presence of God. We read in King Saul’s life in 1 Sam 16:14, that when the Spirit of God departed from Saul, an evil spirit tormented him.
Success is only two words – “God’s Presence.” God has promised never to leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Don’t forget that when Jesus was leaving this earth, he asked his disciples to stay put and wait for the presence of the Holy Spirit. Without Holy Spirit, we cannot do anything. But when we receive Holy Spirit, we receive Power (Acts 1:8). The real power that would transform our lives and make us belong to Christ (Romans 8:9) in whom we have everything.