I remember thinking about “being successful” many times during my early and middle adult years. At first, I wanted to be a successful student, which I measured by my GPA. Then, success in my career was my focus – I wanted the
respect of my colleagues, a comfortable salary. In my 30’s my focus changed to wanting to be a successful parent – “perfect”, happy children was the goal! (Thank goodness my husband’s parenting wisdom saved us all from that goal!)
And now, my children are grown, and I’m taking another look at just what “being successful” means. The family and culture I was raised in define success as having power, status, and money. The voice of “Popular Opinion” today is telling us that success is driving the right car, living in the right neighborhood, having all the “toys” we want. I am grateful that I now have Unity to help me define success.
The following words from Emilie Cady, one of my favorite New Thought writers, addresses this issue:
“Looked at from a purely commercial standpoint, the life of Jesus Christ was a failure. His occupation was a humble one. The work of his hands commanded only the usual recompense. From the world’s point of view, his contribution was merely that of an average man at best. In the field where his greatest visible success lay, the delivering of others from sorrow and trouble, he was not able to save himself. All the way to his ignominious death, he stood before self-satisfied men, chief priests, and Pharisees as a failure. Why? Because he and these men lived from entirely different standpoints. Men lived largely from the external; Jesus lived from within. When one lives from within, success is defined as how much that person brings forth Spirit into the world. After 2000 years, we can see that the life of Jesus Christ stands forth as the inspiration of all love and all goodness. The inspiration of all success.”
So now, for me, I have a new way to measure my success. What can I do, in any one moment, to manifest God in this world? Every single encounter, every
activity that I choose to do with my time, becomes a potentially sacred moment of bringing forth Spirit. What an awesome job description for all of us! Living intentionally in the moment as Spirit’s channel on Earth. Simple. Straight-
forward. And highly successful in God’s opinion!