Whenever we achieve something great, the temptation is to be proud of it. And if achieving that thing took a lot of work, time, or money, it’s natural and okay to feel a sense of satisfaction from a job well-done. But we have to be careful what form that satisfaction takes.
It’s right and good to think, “Wow! I just finished a marathon. Look at what this God-designed human body is capable of. I am so thankful for good health and a family that encouraged me to accomplish this goal!”
It’s not so good to think, “Look at this company I built for myself. I am master of my fate and totally self-reliant. This accomplishment is proof of that.”
Not that anyone’s inner monologue actually sounds that stiff, but I’ve definitely felt those emotions welling up in myself whenever I do something that doesn’t flop.
Whether we admit it our not, we’ve all been there. When God chooses to bless us, it’s so tempting to take the credit. I am personally very blessed, so I face this temptation every day.
I recently started working at a Christian College that just finished a large building project. I think we are all proud of it. It is a well-thought-out addition to the school. A lot of talent and hard work went into designing and building it.
But I hope that we are mostly thankful. Thankful to donors that have now funded over half of the cost. Thankful for leadership that evaluates the direction of the school in light of scripture. Thankful for a God that has allowed this school to remain on the shore of Medicine Lake for over 50 years. Thankful for this treasure in jars of clay that we get to share with the students who come here.
So go, accomplish great things, run marathons, start companies, build gyms. But remember who made you.
Soli Deo Gloria.
The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)