Results, have you had any lately? The productive kind–you know, the ones which make a positive and significant difference in your life or the lives of those around you. Maybe you’ve experienced seasons where you grit your teeth and resolve to push even harder; to finish that project, fix a problem or make something happen. Try as you might, your results have been less than satisfying at best or counterproductive at worst.
I’m not suggesting we should be overly concerned with achievements. However, the Bible is clear about our priorities. It tells us what is most important, reminds us to redeem the time, and encourages us to be good stewards of what we have. So what about results?
Results are the consequence or favorable outcome of our actions. Moreover, results are the product of being on purpose with focus, commitment, and consistent effort. But with such an overwhelming task, where do you start?
There are things in life we can’t control. However, there is much more we can.
The perspective which produces godly results
- “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light” (Matt. 6:22). The eye is the window to the soul; what we focus on increases–good or bad.
- We can’t serve two masters; God and mammon. Although Jesus was referring to worldly things such as money, possessions, and status, the principle is the same. To be single-minded is to be intentional and remain focused. Anything less is considered double-minded. And James says a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways (v. 1:8).
- What competes for your attention? Likely, the answer is in the very list Jesus gave in Matthew 6:25-32. From the ability to provide for yourself and others to health, and standard of living. However, in Matthew 6:33, we’re reminded that when you seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, then all these things will (absolutely) be added to you.
How to see the best results
How do you get perspective, prioritize the right things, manage the mundane, and avoid the distractions that derail results?
- Focus. The idea of “multi-tasking” is something which became popular in our generation, but is it effective and does it produce the results you want? Studies show otherwise.
- Humility. It’s not about self-criticism or condemnation, but a modest view of self-importance. When we give God’s will preeminence, we live according to His plans, not ours (see James 4:10).
- Obedience. Initially not an appealing thought. The word suggests obligation or restriction. Perhaps worst of all, we believe obedience means sacrifice and sacrifice means we give up what we want most. However, obedience to God’s will is a “get to” not a “have to.” When we yield, any sacrifice is superseded by far greater reward.
God’s will is revealed in His written Word and through the Holy Spirit who resides within those who are born again. In 1 Corinthians, the apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth with instructions; not to confine them, but to set them free.
He said, “And this I say for your own profit, not that I may put a leash on you, but for what is proper, and that you may serve the Lord without distraction” (1 Cor. 7:35).
So that we “May serve the Lord without distraction!” When we yield to God, His ways become our ways.
One January shortly after talk of New Year’s resolutions had begun to quiet down, the Lord gave me a sobering word. He said:
If I am anything less than first place in your life, I may as well be last.
Have you made the commitment to be “all in” and truly make God first place in your life?