A Prayer Against Selfish Ambition!
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. Romans 8:14
“I won’t let anyone stop me from my goals!”
I will never forget the day I made this proclamation.
Pregnant with my first child and in my junior year of college, I proclaimed with a righteous indignation that no one would stop me. And although many wanted me to quit college, I was offended at the thought. After all, I was to be the first to graduate college in my family. I had a plan for my future carefully planned out. I couldn’t wait for the pride of walking down the aisle and feeling a sense of accomplishment. In my heart, I thought, “I will show them!” And with that heart, I continued my degree and even got my master’s degree while continuing to have more kids. I ended my college career with almost a 4.0.
I was set to prove that by my own power, I could do anything. Yet, in doing so, my marriage suffered, my kids got very little attention, my time with the Lord was non-existent. Years later, I am convinced that my motive of wanting to prove everyone wrong and the pride of wanting to be the first, caused every area of my life to suffer. Instead of being led by God’s spirit, I was led by my desire to be seen. Getting the degree was less and less of my goal, and being seen was my focus. In many ways, I was living out the verse that says,
For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. James 3:16 NLT
And although there was nothing inherently wrong with pursuing my educational goals, my motive was reflective of selfish ambition and wanting to please my flesh. When we look to the Word, we find this struggle between pleasing ourselves and submitting to God’s will in various moments. Eve’s desire to gain more knowledge and taste what she wasn’t ready shows this struggle. Likewise, we see the carnal nature in David as he lusts for Bathsheba, who was a married woman. Judas does the same as he betrays Jesus for mere coins. And in 1st Samuel 13, Saul is led by his flesh as he does a sacrifice to the Lord at a time that went against God’. Saul’s impatience to wait on God’s timing would cost him gravely.
The truth is this, every time we seek to force our will over God’s, disobedience will follow.
Every time we seek to be the source of attention or operate from a place of selfish gain, we can expect things to not go well for us.
Though it may seem all is well in the moment, we will find that many suffer from our choice to only consider what we want. My prayer today is that we pause and ask the Lord His perfect will. The choices for our lives may not be inherently bad, like my choice to pursue my education. However, if we aren’t led by the Spirit of God to do so, we will face great turmoil. We have a powerful gift in the Holy Spirit. He lives within us and is our guide. He won’t lead us in a way that destroys our home, or causes confusion. His ways are right, pure, and direct us back to God’s perfect will. May we seek to follow His instruction and not miss the beauty of living out God’s plan for us.
In all things, be led by the Spirit.
Lord, I thank you being guiding me. I thank you that your Spirit dwells within every believer. Lord, help me to follow your will and not my own. Reveal to me the truth about every decision. Show me my heart Lord. Show me if I have allowed pride, the desire to be seen, or my flesh to lead my choices. Lord, I only want to be where your presence leads. I trust you Lord and pray to walk in your will all the days of my life. Speak your truth Lord, I’m listening. In Jesus Name, Amen.
For more on living a life of everyday victory, I invite you to purchase the Victory Walk: A 21 Day Devotional on Amazon today by clicking here. While you await your new book, head over to itunes, Spotify, Youtube or Amazon Music and sing out your victory with my latest single, "God Has Not Forgotten You."