What You Can With What You Have. 

Our society bases success around a lot of different things. We see success as having a lot of money, owning a big house, being influential, or having a bunch of stuff. 

We view churches as successful when they have an increasing amount of cash, an enormous building, lots of people to influence, and tons of things inside the church. Kinda sounds like the world’s view of success…

I’m not here to tell you that being blessed is bad. I’m just here to explain the definition of success from the teaching of Jesus. 

In Matthew 25:14-30 Jesus describes a parable about 3 servants who are given bags of gold. The first servant is handed 5 bags, the second 2 bags, and the third only 1 bag. 

In this parable we see the servant with 5 bags double the amount to 10 bags. The servant with 2 bags doubles his amount and ends up with 4 bags. And the servant with 1 bag doesn’t do anything with it…he just kinda hides it away.

The master is pleased by the men who doubled their bags, but a little fussy with the man who didn’t do anything with his. 

Success is not based on what you have, but what you do with what you have. 

This parable does not show unsuccess as being poor. In Luke 21:1-4 we see an old widow who is very poor, but gives all she can to the church. 

A rich man is not successful if he’s just sitting on his wealth and doing nothing with it. A poor man is not successful if they’re sitting on their poverty and doing nothing with it. 

God has given us an incredible amount of blessings. We are given so many opportunities to grow with what we have, but we choose not too. 

Success is taking the circumstances that you’re in, and doing with it what you can. It’s turning $1 into $2, or $1,000,000 into $2,000,000. 

Success isn’t making more of what we have. It’s making the most out of what we have, so we can worship Him through our blessing.

Having a big church that glorifies their progress doesn’t make it successful. Having a big church that thanks God for His many blessings, and glorifies Him with the things He’s given them is successful. 

Having a small church doesn’t make you unsuccessful; however, having a small church that doesn’t strive to grow or build up the body of believers is unsuccessful.

Everything we own is not of our own. Everything we make is not of our own. But if you use what you have made for the glory of God, then you are successful. 

It doesn’t matter the amount of money, how big your establishment is, how much influence you have, or how much stuff you own. 

Success is doing what you can with what you have to ultimately glorify God. 

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14 thoughts on “What You Can With What You Have. 

  1. A relevant selection of scripture here I think is Matthew 6:19-21

    “19 Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

    The parable of the servants with their master’s money I think is intended mostly to illustrate that the one who did nothing with his charge was doubly faithless, both in not creating anything with what he was given as well as judging his master to be harsh (which in turn is judgement that he received as a result of this presumption)

    It would be strange if God needed us to “achieve” anything in a sense since omnipotence is a fundamental attribute of God’s nature. God could achieve anything on His own. He could bring it into being effortlessly. I think then, and this I perceive to be generally consistent with what you’ve said here, is that regardless of how humble our personal circumstances are we all have before us the potential to do good and in this we can participate in the divine nature, the glory of God which we can make manifest for our own benefit and those around us.

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  2. “Success is doing what you can with what you have to ultimately glorify God.” Yes, yes, yes. I love this so much! I just finished Radical by David Platt and it addresses this. American culture is so different than our Jesus and the life he is calling us to live.

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  3. Wow! This is really inspiring! Too often I feel like I have to wait to accomplish something for God because my situation isn’t ideal or because I feel to young to accomplish it. This was a great reminder to me that God will use me personally where I am at right now, not just in the future!

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  4. Well said! I totally agree with you. If only we could lay down our wordly view of God, his blessing and of church and get a glimpse from a Kingdom Perspective. We are so rich in Christ. Let’s get out there and share those riches, rather than sit in our safety, obese from feasting on His word and in all He has given us, but not sharing it with those who God has put us in contact with, who need it so much.

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  5. Definitely agree. The ultimate goal is bringing glory to God and others to salvation through Christ Jesus. If you aren’t using your gifts, talents, money, and life for those purposes, it is worth nothing because all the things of the earth will pass away. When you use everything you have for God because He gave and gives you everything He had and has, then you are storing up eternal treasure in Heaven (and, more importantly, taking some people with you through the Holy Spirit’s work in your life). What a goal! When I begin to think of the worth things have in the eternal scheme of things, it sets me straight. Great post! =]

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  6. An excellent definition of success Nicholas!
    Excellent but at the same time challenging….After reading your definition I have to look to myself and think, “Have I used wisely what I have been given?” Am I being faithful with everything God has put in my hands???
    Let me think on that…..!

    Rolain

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