I know. I know. That sounds kind of crazy when our world is driven by success.
Just do a quick Google search of the word “success” and you’ll find over a million sites. 400,000 of those being books written on how to succeed.
Some of our best quotes are about success or failure.
Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed. (Abraham Lincoln)
Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm. (Winston Churchill)
In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure. (Bill Cosby)
Honestly, I don’t have a fear of failure.
I have a fear of succeeding without relying on the LORD.
In 2 Chronicles chapter 16, we find Asa, king of Judah, in a situation. Baasha, king of Israel, is fortifying Ramah to prevent anyone from leaving or entering the territory of Asa. Asa turns to his possessions and strikes a treaty with Ben-Hadad, king of Aram.
Stay with me.
It gets good.
Ben-Hadad sends his forces out and they conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel Maimand all the store cities of Naphtali! When Baasha gets this news, he abandons his work and leaves Ramah.
SUCCESS!! THE PLAN WORKED!!
Not only did Baasha leave, Asa was able to gather the stones and timber from Ramah which he used to build up Geba and Mizpah.
If you take a look back at chapter 14, you find Asa in a similar battle. However, instead of using silver and gold to win, he cried out to the LORD.
Then Asa called to the Lord his God and said,
“Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty.
Help us, O Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this vast army.
O Lord, you are our God; do not let man prevail against you.”
(2 Chronicles 14:11)
Result? The Lord struck down the Cushites before Asa and Judah.
What changed? What was different in this battle? Did he no longer “need” the LORD? Was he no longer “powerless” now that the temple was filled with silver and gold? Was he knowledgeable enough to handle this one? I mean, does it matter anyway…he was successful in BOTH battles!
Verse 7 – “Because you relied on the king of Aram and not on the Lord your God, the army of the king of Aram has escaped from your hand.”
WAIT…read that again!
He didn’t say the army of Baasha, king of Israel, escaped from your hand. He said the army of the king of Aram!
Does this mean God just might have different plans than we do?
The next few verses have become a constant reminder every day I leave my house.
For the eyes of the LORD search the entire earth to show Himself strong through those whose hearts are fully committed to Him. (2 Chronicles 16:9)
I wonder how many times we miss the supernatural by relying on the natural?
Succeeding without relying on Him for the victory.
Cody has contributed his thoughts here in the past, and you’ll surely find yourself enriched by reading his other posts: