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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Prosperity (05/11/06)

TITLE: How Do You Measure Succes
By Kimberly Jones


How Do You Measure Success?

I have come to realize in the past two years if not more so in the last few months what the true meaning of prosperity is. It is not what I have or do not have that matters, it is who I have in my life whether it is friends, family or acquaintances.

Now mind you some of the people that we have in our lives may not be the most desirable or the ones we like the most, but they are still an important part of our growth process.

In His Word God states clearly in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you; plans to prosper you and not to harm you plans to give you a hope and a future.” Let me tell you it has taken me sometime to understand fully what God means in this scripture (what it means to me may be something totally different to you and that is okay), I have come to understand that this verse is not just talking about financial blessing but also spiritual, social and physical blessing. Prosperity (and not exactly in that order) means that what is around us makes us a better person and does not turn us into an ogre. We do not think that we are better than other people. We don’t forget where we came from or who we knew before we got there. Because those that were there before the money will be there after the money, success and fame.

We are prosperous because we have a drawing power that allows people to see us as some one to be around because of God’s light in us. We are showing by example how to live a rich and fulfilling life even if we don’t have 2 pennies to rub together. We are showing them through our testimony how faithful God is, can, and will be.

Now you may not understand or care to hear this because I am not talking about riches beyond belief or having a bank account that never runs out, but hang tight with me here. God has said “The thief comes to kill, to steal, and to destroy, but I have come that they might have life and have it more abundantly (John 10:10).” He is not saying he denies us riches or anything else, but he does not say “I have come so that they might have every whim their heart desires.”

Our Heavenly Father does not desire for any of his children to struggle, and delay is not and does not always mean denial, Sometimes he has to do some work in us and on us to get us ready for the next big step. Joseph for example was sold into slavery, lied on, imprisoned, and then left in jail two more years before God finally brought the meaning of his dream and vision to pass. Joseph could have said “look here God I have been faithful, then you give me a dream about my father and brothers bowing down to me and here I am far away from my family, so now what?” But he did not ask, or say “why me?” Because through that entire situation God was humbling Joseph, getting him ready to handle the responsibility of being second in command, and having his family humbled before him. When he first had and shared the dream their was probably a little smugness within him.
God knew he wanted to use Joseph and Joseph knew that he was the one for the job; he just forgot who was in charge and gave him the ability to organize, be in charge, and lead a project such as storing food to save millions of people. Later after the journey he realized that, that was a huge responsibility and that it required him to not be superior or to lord his position over every body.

Prosperity can be something joyous or it can be looked upon as a curse and if it is the latter step back, look at the motive and reasoning behind the success and prosperity, and then adjust your thought process, attitude towards others and the responsibility. Then turn around and go the other way walking the way God intended you to walk in prosperity. If you are not sure what that entails then search the scripture and let God speak to you through His written word then simply apply it.

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This article has been read 535 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Edy T Johnson 05/20/06
Technically your writing is good, but you could make it more appealing with a story to illustrate your message. I'd like to see your words as part of a dialog between characters in a story. God bless your work.
Helen Paynter05/21/06
I have to dispute that Scripture can validly mean different things to different people, but other than that, I liked the message of this piece. I felt you covered a lot of ground, and perhaps the piece would benefit from being simplified - concentrate on Joseph, for instance, or on the Jeremiah passage. Keep writing!
Jan Ackerson 05/23/06
When you began your essay with that fact that you've learned some lessons in recent years and months, I was expecting to read about how God has taught you these lessons--some life stories, which are nearly always interesting to read. Consider doing something like that for your next entry, and keep writing! There is lots of potential here.