“Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” — John 7:38
The Game of Life, by Randall D. Kittle
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I’m not sure why, but my family loves to play board games.  Monopoly, Sorry, Trouble, Clue, Risk, Trivial Pursuit, and the list goes on and on.  One of my favorite board games has always been The Game of Life.  Have you ever played it?  The point of the game is to get to the end of your life with the most money and life tiles (that come from exciting experiences) so you can retire in Millionaire Estates.  

While
Life is a fun game that we enjoy playing as a family, it’s unfortunate that so many people in this world actually live their lives like that is what life is really all about.  Most American’s suffer to some extent from the Game of Life philosophy that “He who has the most toys wins!”  They try to acquire more money, bigger homes, more cars, and have more exotic life experiences so they will have a successful life … the American Dream.   

Now most of those things aren’t bad.  Who doesn’t want to be healthy, earn a decent living, and own a nice home … we all want that.  But even when you have all those things, there are plenty of times the “successful” life leaves us feeling empty inside.  You can have all those things and still not feel successful … not be satisfied with life. 

The Emptiness of Success
Becoming rich and famous doesn’t guarantee contentment.  If it did, multimillionaire athletes would not jeopardize their careers by using illegal drugs.  You don’t have to look any further than Hollywood to see that what is sold as the successful life of the American Dream often times turns into a nightmare of divorce, emptiness, and depression.  Obviously, contentment must come from a source other than wealth and fame. 

The other day I read this great quote, “Failure is to succeed at something that doesn’t really matter.”  When we succeed at something that doesn’t leave a lasting mark in eternity, even though we may get accolades and awards for it, the reality is we have not really succeeded at all.   

So many Americans are failing in life because they’re striving to succeed at the wrong goal!  Jesus put it this way in Luke 9:25,
“What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?”   Success in the world without success for eternity is really no success at all.  It will result in emptiness internally and it means failure eternally as well.  Jesus also said, “Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for My sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39).  When we are searching to find our success apart from Christ, we lose in this life … and the next.  But when we live our lives for Christ, that’s when we attain a success the world may not notice, but eternity will never forget. 

Have you been living life driven to perform, focused on possessions?  While those things may provide temporary happiness, I guarantee they will leave you feeling empty.  The only way to have true contentment is to center the focus of your life on Jesus and pursue Him above all else. 

Don’t let joy, peace, and contentment be stolen by the shallow success the world offers.  Instead, find the full life available when you trust Jesus Christ as your Savior and live your life centered on Him.  I pray that God will help your eyes to be fixed on the Lord and that trusting in Him you will find the lasting satisfaction of true success.
 

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