[Video starts – Stock Footage]
Brother Mark Vasquez: There’s a drive and rush that people feel when they’ve won, and that’s not limited to games and sports either. There’s a feeling of winning in life, and many people would label that as success. It’s natural for us to want and experience this feeling. There are some who consider themselves unsuccessful, though; or that they won’t be able to achieve success because of a particular circumstance that they’re in. That’s not true, though. The key for success is within reach for all of us, and we should take hold of it. What is success, though? There’s a common point-of-view that success is about how much money one makes, what position someone is in, or what kind of honor one receives. But is that really success? Take a look at these videos and see how others define success.
[Video starts – source: YouTube.com video ‘How Do You Define Success?’]
Girl 1: I define okay…
Girl 2: Huh…
Boy 1: I guess…
Girl 3: I don’t know.
Girl 4: Success means motivation, passion—
Girl 1: Determination.
Girl 3: Going to Disneyland.
Girl 5: Just kicking down fear.
Boy 2: Achieve the goals that you have set for yourself.
Boy 3: It all depends on what you see as a failure.
Boy 4: Success to me is not in terms of material goods or how much money I make.
Boy 5: Oh, I define success by being happy.
Boy 6a: Success is wanting what you have.
Boy 6b: Being satisfied with what you have and happy each day; one day at a time.
Boy 7a: But I think what really makes somebody happy is being content with their state.
Girl 6: I’m surprised! That was a good answer!
Boy 8: When you get to the end of your life; if you can look back and be proud of yourself, of what you’ve done, and happy with the way you lived it, I think you’re successful.
Brother Mark Vasquez: We just heard what others said about success, and, if you didn’t notice, it’s not all about wealth or status. One of the gentlemen that we just viewed said, “Success is to achieve the goals that you have set for yourself” – and that’s not far from the dictionary’s definition of success. The definition of success, according to Google is:
The accomplishment of an aim or purpose.
What would you define as success?
Boy 1: Success? Well, I mean, actually just being happy in what you’re doing. If you’re making money at it—as long as you’re happy, you’re successful. You got your family oriented and the things around you that you love, I feel like that’s successful to me.
Girl 1: Success to me is just happiness; no matter what you’re doing, as long as you’re happy, then you’re successful. That’s all it is for me and that’s all I want my kids to do is just be happy.
Girl 2: Being happy with one’s self, I feel, and not harming other people with that joy.
Brother Mark Vasquez: Although people may have different goals and ambitions in life, there are common qualities found in people who accomplish their goals and are successful. Their goal may be to live a healthier lifestyle, or spend more time with your family. You might envision yourself with a particular future ahead of you. Whatever your goal is, there’s something we could all do that will bring each one of us to where we want to be, even if there might be challenges and obstacles ahead of us. So who’s the one that can give us success and help us get over any obstacle that we might face? Let’s begin our Bible reading in our session today, in I Corinthians, we’ll read 15:57 this is what it says:
But we thank God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!
[I Corinthians 15:57 Easy-To-Read Version]
Brother Mark Vasquez: Who can give us success? The Lord God. Did you notice how the Bible describes the success He can give to us? The Bible said, “..we thank God who gives us the victory.” We’re reminded that if there’s anything or any situation that may hold us back from what we’re hoping for, God is the one who can give us victory. We’ll overcome any obstacle. And who will God give the success and victory to? We’ll read in Psalms 37:37.
But the good man–what a different story! For the good man – the blameless, the upright, the man of peace–he has a wonderful future ahead of him. For him there is a happy ending.
[Psalms 37:37 The Living Bible]
Brother Mark Vasquez: Who are the ones who will receive success or a wonderful future? The Bible reminded us that the good man has a wonderful future ahead of him. The good man’s life in the end will be happy. Isn’t this what we consider successful? God will give that kind of life to those who are good. But who are those who are good in God’s sight? We’ll read I Kings 15, and the verse is 5:
The LORD did this because David did what the LORD considered right: David never failed to do anything the LORD commanded him to do his entire life…
[I Kings 15:5 (A) God’s Word Translation]
Brother Mark Vasquez: Who are those who are good in God’s sight? The example that we just heard is king David. Why was king David considered good in God’s sight? The Bible said David never failed to do anything the Lord commanded him to do his entire life.
Brother Mark Vasquez: The key to success is obeying anything the Lord commands us to do. King David was considered a very successful king because he obeyed the Lord God. We will also have a successful life if we obey God the same way. This isn’t to say that one doesn’t need to work or put in extra effort to achieve one’s goals. It’s good to work hard. The Bible tells us to do so. In Proverbs 10:4, we’re reminded that laziness leads to poverty, and hard work is what makes someone profit. And in that same book, in Proverbs 14:23, the Bible reminds us to work to earn a living. What we need to remember though, is that we need to work hardest in obeying the Lord’s commandments. That is the right thing to do. What happened to the people who chose to do the wrong thing, and didn’t obey the Lord God? Let’s read that here in Genesis, we’ll read 4:7, it says this:
If you had done the right thing, you would be smiling. But you did the wrong thing, and now sin is waiting to attack you like a lion. Sin wants to destroy you, but don’t let it!
[Genesis 4:7 Contemporary English Version]
Brother Mark Vasquez: What happened to the ones who didn’t obey God? Sin is waiting to destroy them. Did you notice how different that is from the ones who do the right thing? The ones who do the right thing are smiling. If we do the right thing we’ll be smiling too, and experience the success that God can give to us. Some people might not think that this is the solution to their problem in achieving success. But it is. Don’t believe it? Try it! Driven individuals who are hungry for success are willing to do many things that they haven’t done before. If you are willing to try out different ways to be successful, maybe even things out of your own comfort zone, then you need to obey God. The reason why some people don’t experience success is because they don’t even give God’s commandments a chance. If we give God’s commandments a chance and obey Him, how will He bless us? Let’s read that in Isaiah. Isaiah 48, we’ll read 17 down to 18, it says this:
With this message: People of Israel, I am the holy LORD God, the one who rescues you. For your own good, I teach you, and I lead you along the right path. How I wish that you had obeyed my commands! Your success and good fortune would then have overflowed like a flooding river.
[Isaiah 48:17-18 Contemporary English Version]
Brother Mark Vasquez: How will God bless us? If we decide to obey God’s commandments, God is ready to bless us in a beautiful way. God Himself said that if we obey Him success and good fortune will overflow like a flooding river. There may be books, seminars, and other resources that give their opinion on success, but the one who gives success Himself is offering to give it to us now. And not only will He give us success, how long will God’s blessings last for us? In Job we’ll read in 36:11.
If they obey and serve him the rest of their lives will be successful, and the rest of their years will be happy.
[Job 36:11 New Century Version]
Brother Mark Vasquez: How long will God bless us for, if we decide to obey Him? The rest of our lives will be successful and happy. If you ever thought that there was a secret way of experiencing success, or that it might not be something for you, we hope that you realize today that the key for success is not a secret or hidden at all. God wants all of us to experience victory and triumph over any obstacle and for us to have a wonderful life. We just need to remember that He is the one who will give us success, so we need to keep following Him to always experience it. Thank you for joining us on The Solution, we’ll see you next time.