Success means different things to different people. It is hard to present a definition that suits all conditions. In general terms, success means to attain the expected mark. ‘The achievement of something planned or attempted: attainment of fame, wealth, or power, something that turns out as planned or intended” (Encarta Dictionary).
The worldview of success as applied to an individual is a person who is wealthy, famous, or powerful; a person who has a record of spectacular achievement. The acquisition of money, material things and honors for most people indicates success. These achievements are good where they are used as means to an end. Everybody has an expected end. To use achievements in life to attain one’s expected end is true success indeed.
What makes God’s definition of success different from the human understanding is that not all that appears to be successful, award-winning achievements on earth are deemed so from heaven’s perspective. One of the popular scriptures on the subject of success is Joshua 1:8: “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
The world’s perspective on success focuses on ephemeral things, phenomena that fade away with time. Good success reflects permanence. The Promised Land was given to the children of Israel for everlasting habitation. Entering in to possess it was viewed by God as more than success because it involved permanent establishment. To conquer the Canaanites and dispossess them of the land is success. However, without occupying the land, the achievement misses the mark as it happened during the dispersions.
For the New Testament saint, winning a moral war against Satan, the world and the flesh is success. But participating in the rapture of the church is good success because it has the degree of permanence. Nothing can reverse it. If you defeat Satan today he can come back tomorrow. So, God’s perspective on success must be on relevant issues of life and permanent to make their attainment irreversible. Those who win Olympic gold medals with enhancement performing drugs can be stripped of their awards several years after the event. This is success that is not so good.
Your success in life does not depend on what you have achieved, done or not done but on who you are. It is unwise to strive to be successful in unimportant matters of life while neglecting issues of substance in time and eternity. To prosper is to have good success. Good success is connected with destiny. Human destinies were set before the foundation of the world. The starting point of good success in life is destiny discovery. You cannot discover your true destiny unless you know who you are. You cannot know who you are unless you have been translated from death to life. The power to succeed in life is derived from the power to become a child of God. “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:12-13).
Good success is to become one with Jesus Christ in what is known as Hypostatic Union. Strive for it. As it is written: “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. (Luke 12:32).