Reaching the Heights - What is Success and How is it Measured?

What is Success and How is it Measured?

Riches and wealth imply possessions, assets, status and affluence. They also imply lots of money and, perhaps influence. In our modern world money is probably the most transferable asset.

In most western societies money is, arguably the most well recognised measure of success. But money does not buy genuine friendship, neither will it, in the opinion of The Beatles, “Buy you Love”. In fact, if we look beneath the surface at the value of money to an individual, we discover it is not necessarily the most important thing, nor the telling factor in their success and influence.

Time is a commodity which, when we are young, we think we have plenty of. But, it is not very long in the course of our lives before we realise we do not have as much time as we thought. So it’s not something to be wasted or given away cheaply. Time, well invested, can be worth a fortune in terms of influence and income. Wise use of time is often more important than having lots of money, if you want to make a difference in your world, in your lifetime.

Determination is quality of character which is absolutely essential if we are to make an impact for good in our world. As a young footballer I played at youth level for my local professional club, where there were scores of payers trying to “make the grade”. The rewards, even then, were high. However, it still amazes me how many players with outstanding individual talent did not make it as well-paid professionals. By comparison, there were many who did make it at the top level, with much more limited ability, but high levels of determination and discipline. Practice, practice and more practice, plus the confidence to believe they were good enough, was a winning combination for many fairly ordinary players.

Courage is another, sometimes vital factor in achieving success. Again using the footballer example, injury can threaten and sometimes end a promising playing career prematurely. Coming back from a serious injury requires courage to overcome the fear of it happening again.

Faith is another factor which is highly under-rated. Believing in yourself, your ability, your capacity to learn and make progress may be crucial. In some cases self-belief plus faith that God , himself wants you to succeed is a winning combination. It gives rise to a “never give up” mentality which often proves successful, especially in the face of the inevitable set-backs often encountered in life.

My next vital characteristic is heart and soul. If your heart is in it, you have a determination and a belief that you can do what is in your heart. It’s often a winning combination.

There are other factors, such as ambition, ingenuity and personality which can also be winning components in achieving success in whatever area you choose as a career. Here are a few examples of people who have succeeded in their field, indicating it’s how you finish that matters, not how you start:

Henry Ford, the famous American motor car manufacturer was not an instant success. His early businesses failed, leaving him broke on five occasions before he founded the successful Ford Motor Company.

Thomas Edison experimented thousands of times without giving up, before producing a commercially viable electric light bulb. He eventually hit on a winning design which revolutionised homes, work-places and leisure activities of people the world over.

Walt Disney was sacked by a newspaper editor because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas”. He had several business ventures which ended in bankruptcy and failure, before he found a successful recipe in merchandising, movies and theme parks around the world.

Jamie Vardy, the Leicester City and England footballer was released by Sheffield Wednesday at the age of 16. He played for three none league clubs, before Championship side Leicester signed him in 2012 for £1m, aged 25. Leicester won promotion in 2014 and became Premier League Champions for the first time in their history, in 2015-16 season. Vardy made his England debut in 2015, aged 28, just 4 years after playing for Fleetwood Town in the Conference.

Great faith is the product of great fights. Great testimonies are the outcome of great tests. Great triumphs can only come out of great trials. Smith Wigglesworth
In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists. Eric Hoffer
Take what bothers you most as an invitation by God to work at solving that problem. Lance Wallnau
Without grace, life is filled with struggle, it is not a life we enjoy; but with his grace, we can enter the rest (peace) of the Lord and experience joy unspeakable and full of glory. Joyce Meyer
You never lose; you win or you learn. Nelson Mandela
Your behaviour won't change until your thoughts change. As long as you think, "I can't do this", you are never going to be able to do it! Joyce Meyer
I am not moved by what I see. I am not moved by what I feel. I am only moved by what I believe. Smith Wigglesworth
Leadership is not about titles, positions or flow charts. It's about one life influencing another. John Maxwell
If God is enthroned on my praise, who is enthroned on my complaining? If I enter his gates with praise, who's gates am I entering when I complain? Bill Johnson
When we believe in God's sovereignty, and not our own understanding, we'll see how our problems will never outweigh what God has promised us (Prov. 3:5 NIV) T D Jakes
Success is doing ordinary things extraordinarily well. Jim Rhon
If I give up my right to understand, He will give me the peace that passes understanding. Bill Johnson
Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill
You can't change your life, but if you change your mind, God will transform your life. Kris Vallotton
In prayer we bring our spiritual enemies into the presence of God. Jarrod Cooper
Once in a while we manage to stumble on the truth, but most of us manage to pick ourselves up and hurry along as if nothing had happened. Winston Churchill
The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter. Winston Churchill
When the Lord says, "Do something", the favour needed to do it is already attached to the command. David Forster
Being powerful is like being a lady, if you have to tell people you are, then you aren't. Margaret Thatcher
The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but God will make us good because he loves us. C S Lewis
Fear is misplaced faith. Kris Vallotton
God has already seen every mistake, every failure and every weakness, and the good news is he's already forgiven you. He is not holding it against you. Joel Osteen
God is not nearly so interested in changing your circumstances as he is in changing you. Joyce Meyer
Pray, and let God worry Martin Luther
Those who never change their mind never change anything. Winston Churchill
What you do (for a living) is not who you are.  Celia Apeagyei-Collins 
 People who write you off when you fail know nothing about history and even less about life. No person ever fully succeeds until they fully fail. Lance Wallnau 
There is no uncreated being except God. God has no opposite. Satan, the leader or dictator of devils, is the opposite, not of God, but of Michael.  C S Lewis
He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. Jim Elliot
You never know how much you really believe anything until it's truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life or death to you. C S Lewis
If you know you are loved, faith is easy. It's easy to trust someone you know loves you. David Forster
Every moment that you spend upset, despaired, anguished, angry, afraid or hurt, because of the behaviour of someone else in your life, is a moment in which you have given up control of your life. Unknown
Remember, you do not have to live today by how you feel, nor by what you think about yourself, nor by what someone else thinks about you. The person who created you thinks you are wonderful, and he waits with open arms for you to agree with him. David Forster
Shift gears from doing something in God's presence to simply being in God's presence. Lance Wallnau
Your future doesn't depend on what is in front of you, it depends on who is in you. Lance Wallnau
Did you know that you are utterly and completely loved by God, without doing a single thing, good or bad. David Forster
no one knows how bad they are until they have tried very hard to be good.. C S Lewis
If we are living daily by faith, we will be constantly over our head; Beyond our ability to do this our that. We should all be in that place in some area of our life. If we are not, we will be like an old wineskin; too rigid and inflexible to receive the Lord's new wine. Rick Joyner
For a believer intimacy with God is not an option, it's a necessity. Guidance and direction depend on this intimacy and sensitivity to Holy Spirit. There is no substitute for the latter. Graham Cooke
Jesus reveals the Father to us. He gives us peace and rest. He is not a hard taskmaster. David Forster
The God who creates everything, pursues you. Don't let anyone tell you you're are worth less than that. Louie Giglio
In the kingdom, physical obedience brings spiritual release. Bill Johnson
Don't be surprised if you pray for nearness to God and he sends a trial. Nearness always requires dependence.
Our corporate worship doesn't meet a need in God, it meets a need in us. Sam Storms
How you feel is not who you are. Feelings are great servants and terrible masters. Kris Vallotton
There is a lot that is good in your life. Don't take it for granted. Don't get so focused on the struggle that you mis the gift of today. Joel Osteen
The enemy commits identity theft when you believe you must earn what God freely gives. Alison Brown
If you agree with your creator and receive what he freely gives, you will have serenity in your identity and confidence in your countenance. David Forster
If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got. David Forster
A satisfying and exciting life organises around an identity focused on Jesus, not the church..  Graham Cooke
Satan cannot impose his will on anyone, he has to have our agreement.  Graham Cooke
Every day adjust yourself to where God is taking you, that is, toward the prophetic vision he has given you. Lance Wallnau
Real faith is not faith in an outcome (of a particular situation or circumstance), it's faith in a person. David Forster
Be in no doubt that God will redeem the losses and mistakes of your past life. David Forster
God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from himself, because there is simply no such thing. C S Lewis
Wealth, women and status; these are the major temptations that can draw a man away from God. Each is morally neutral; yet given the appropriate significance, each can control us. David Forster
The devil's finest trick is to persuade you that he doesn't exist. Anon
Fear is the enemy of love. The two cannot exist together. We have to choose daily: Fear or Love. David Forster
You are not saved because of the quality of your faith. You are saved because of the object of your faith; The Redeemer! Tim Keller
Revival goes from the bottom up; Reformation goes from the top down. Therefore reformation is institutional and revival is personal. Lance Wallnau
Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts. Albert Einstein
Inner peace is key to experiencing God's presence. Rest is a weapon against the enemy Graham Cooke
Fairy tales don't tell children that dragons exist. Children know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children that dragons can be killed. G K Chesterton
When you are at peace with God, you will be at peace with yourself and with other people. David Forster
You can believe in Christianity in the same way you believe that the sun has risen; Firstly, because you see it and secondly because by it you see everything else. C S Lewis
A little while ago I became old enough to start believing in fairy tales again. This means there are far better things ahead of me then what I have left behind. C S Lewis
Your unfinished destiny is your most potent argument with death. Graham Cooke
I am not focused on what I am not, I am focused on what he is for me. David Forster
Reaching the Heights