Early in his ministry, Jesus was wildly successful. He healed people from all kinds of diseases, set them free from their inner demons, and more and more people came to him. His disciples said to him, “Everyone is looking for you!”
That was the time to capitalize on his celebrity—to get invited to the best parties, to go for that endorsement contract, to make a statement to sway public opinion. Imagine all that Jesus could have done with that kind of success!
Instead, Jesus said to his disciples, “We must go.”
He wasn’t looking for a party invite, or to capitalize on his success in any way—instead, Jesus handled his success by spending the night alone in prayer, and by listening for God’s call in his life. (Mark 1:35-39)
I’m still thinking about my earlier post on success. Does success always mean winning? Or being popular? Or having more money? Clearly Jesus had his own definition.
Success wasn’t found in the crowds, but by spending a night alone to clear his head, praying about all that happened and what might be next, becoming convinced that he should move on from the certainty of success where he was to the new challenge and uncertain reception in the next town.
I wonder what the Olympic athletes are doing now that they’ve returned home from their success. Getting some much needed rest I hope! And making some decisions about what’s next.
Writing/Reflection Prompt: How do you handle success?
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