Success < Love

As I stood upon the little green-blue stage of the multi-purpose room of my school and accepted my awards for this school year, I blushed and halfheartedly accepted them. I glanced around nervously at the sea of students, each individually successful in their own way. Successful. I stumbled over that word.

Even though I received many awards tonight, I don’t know if I would consider myself…successful. Grades are great, sure. I just felt though, that the definition of success seemed a bit…wrong.

Good grades are, well good, but are they really all that we should strive for… to be successful? Society deems success as having good grades, having a large house, having a multitude of money, and having a high paying, stressful, over-the-top job that you could consider a ‘bragging right’. To me it all seems wrong.

Success should not be measured in achievements, but rather the way you live your life.

I listen to my parents discuss their success. They seem disappointed. They seem to feel that they hadn’t achieved much… they hadn’t succeeded in their endeavors. I feel the complete opposite though.

My parents are good, kind, hardworking people who care deeply about their family and God. They have raised three good and kind children who have a love for God and care about other people. These children respect those around them and treat others with the utmost kindness in their hearts. They are quiet and courteous, and just a dash bashful!

Is that not successful? Is being a good person not an achievement? Is serving God not respectable or an achievement? Something that should be held in high honor?

I feel that success in God’s eyes in measured in love, not awards. 

Accepting these awards made me feel embarrassed. I know that I’ve done well in school… anyone who tries hard enough can do that. But only a few people can actually say that they have succeeded in loving their neighbor and following God’s commands.

Succeeding in love often goes unnoticed, but I feel that it deserves the greatest award, with which you will be repaid with… God’s eternal home.

“Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers
but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and who meditates on his law day and night.


That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
    whatever they do prospers.”
Psalms 1: 1-3
Success is not being dazzling and glamorous with a fancy job, it’s serving God to the best of your abilities. It’s loving your neighbor. It’s living a life of purposeful fulfillment, not one in which you strive to be the biggest or the best.

God bless you and may you be successful in love, walking a good path, and delighting in the Lord. Then, you will be truly successful.

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