Success is often defined by status. In this day and age if you don’t have a lofty status, you’re viewed as unworthy, unsuccessful and inferior to those who have achieved a well-ranking status. In the world’s perspective, if you are married, have children and a family, chances are you are well on your way to success. Add in a well paying job and a powerful job title to the mix for extra bonus points. In the midst of singleness it can result in us feeling unfulfilled and unsuccessful in our lives. Maybe it seems like you haven’t found your purpose in life? Maybe you’re waiting for your circumstances to change so you can truly find happiness in your circumstances?
As much as I hate to admit this, I tend to gauge my success by my performance. When I feel happy with my life and achievements, I often feel more successful. Sadly, I have to admit most days leave me feeling unsuccessful and unqualified, due to my life turning out differently than I expected. Endless mistakes, worries and doubts flood in and my fulfillment in my success is cast out the window. I look around at others who have successful marriages, relationships, careers and seemingly happy lives and I grow discouraged. How I desire to find that “success” that others do. I have come to find that as appealing as the world’s view of success looks from the outside, there is so much more that characterizes success.
Success isn’t defined by our relationship status, degree, popularity or leadership. Success is defined by living the life God has given us, following after Him and serving Him with our life the best way we can. It’s making the most of our opportunities that He has placed in front of us right now and using them to glorify Him. It’s not looking for something, or someone, to make us feel accomplished or complete. In fact, if our lives were how we wished they would be, God wouldn’t be using our life in the incredible ways He is right now. When we seek God, we are in the exact place and enduring the perfect circumstances God wanted us to be in, there’s no mistakes or accidents with where we currently are now.
Finding True Success
I can’t count the times when I look back over my life and I questioned God’s direction. I doubted God’s goodness in the darkest of valleys, wondering if I’d ever pull through. Amidst it all, God remained. Not only did He help me overcome the painful difficulties of my past, but He kept me safe and protected me from what I thought was a perfect solution to my longing heart. I viewed success as a fulfillment to a desire I longed for, instead of remembering true success comes from only finding fulfillment in the One who created me. My life may feel unsuccessful, but God desires to use broken people to perform some of His greatest work. Sometimes we can even find that His greatest work occurs right within our hearts, chipping away at the rough edges gripped by a desire to control our life.
When God isn’t the center of my focus, everything gets out of proportion. My purpose grows foggy and I lose sight of why I’m truly here. I have found that if I’m waiting for things to change in my life for me to be happy, I’ll be waiting forever for something that may never occur how I desire. In result, I’m allowing my joy to be determined by something I could lose. If I choose to focus on God and serve Him, even during the times that seem ever so unsuccessful and uncertain, I know He is using what I’m going through for an incredible purpose. That’s something that will always remain, even after my time here on earth. We don’t need to attain a higher purpose than what God has given us right here in the present. Choose to use what God has provided you with right now, not waiting to gain success by achieving a different status.
I Samuel 12:24
But be sure to fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.
Finding Purpose in Every Season
God uses every season of our life, including singleness, for something amazing. He’s teaching us to deepen our trust in Him and also learn more about ourselves. God is preparing and working in you right now, whether you get into a relationship, become married or remain single.
No season of life is more important or useful than another. Each season has valuable lessons to be learned that we could only experience by enduring through the difficult and enjoyable. Don’t go through this season waiting for something to change. Don’t live your life waiting for someone to complete you or make you feel successful. Live now. Know that God is shaping you and perfecting you to become the person He desired you to be, all within His timing. Let the uncertainty of singleness be used as an opportunity for you to strengthen your trust in God. Ask God to give you a satisfied heart with where He has you right now. Live your life in the present, not just waiting for things to change.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Longing for earthly success will bring discouragement when our life doesn’t go as we expected. Choose to find everlasting success by living your life for a higher calling by serving God even when your life isn’t going how you planned. Rest in the promise that God is working in your life. He is leading you down the perfect path with eternal success when you place Him first in your life and rely on Him for strength and guidance. You’re life may be viewed as unsuccessful in the eyes of the world, but when you’re using your life for God’s glory there’s no higher form of success!