God Driven vs Success Driven

It seems to me that too often Christian leaders are more “success driven” than “God driven.” By this I mean that pastors too often measure their own success by the externals rather than the eternals. We tend to put a premium on those things that can be measured and observed by ourselves and by others. For example, we can see the numbers in attendance or the new building that we’ve built, or the new state-of-the-art equipment in the audio-video department. Eternal things, however, according to Paul (2 Cor. 4:18) are invisible. What are the invisible eternals? Some of them would include our own devotional life, our witness, our prayer closet prayers, and our faith. When we God driven rather than success driven our decisions will be in alignment with God’s will and God is able to do things that we cannot do for ourselves.

Let me provide an example. When I went to Kansas I soon found that Church of God churches were few and far between. As the district pastor God birthed in me the desire to plant another Church of God church. I began to visit other towns near Junction City (which is where I was pastoring) and found the beautiful small town of Abilene, Kansas. It was the hometown of Dwight Eisenhower, and I fell in love with it. There were other Pentecostal churches in the town, but I still thought that I should plant a Church of God church. However, try as I might, nothing opened up and I never planted a church in Abilene. Instead, there was another little town about 30 minutes south of Junction City – Herington, Kansas. It was a little hole-in-the-wall town (pop. 2,500) that was out in the middle of wheat and milo fields. As it turned out there were no Pentecostal churches in Herington and in short order God provided a beautiful worship facility for less than six thousand dollars. It was a debt free church in two years. That’s a God thing.

If I had pursued my own plans in Abilene and we would have had yet another Pentecostal church in the town and a large debt to go with it. God knows what He’s doing and His ways are the best ways. That's why every leader should strive to be God driven rather than success driven. The ultimate success will be to hear God say, "Well done thy good and faithful servant. Because you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over much."