“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”- 2 Corinthians 4:18
One by-product of pursuing the god of achievement is distraction. We may become so distracted that we miss divine moments. God longs to say things to us, but we’re too busy to pick up on His presence. As Pastor Kyle Idleman notes in Chapter 9 of Gods at War, achievement is a particularly dangerous form of idolatry because its major components include virtue and traditional values (like hard work).
Pastor Idleman explains that we can choose what is better every single day when we make our relationship with God more important than anything else. Achievement, he states, is a significant part of glorifying God, but not the raison d’etre of life:
“Working hard and achieving goals are an important part of a God-glorifying life. But they are not life. They are not even a measuring stick for the worth of life. When we give them our soul, they become one more false god- a great cluster of merit badges, melted into a golden calf.”
The illusion of achievement is more than beginning to believe in what we’ve done. Left unchecked, what we’ve done soon begins to define who we are. Burning down our idols may be incredibly painful, but sometimes that’s what we need to do to connect with God.
Today’s question: Is your public or private self-image intimately connected with your education or former job? What have you found effective for seeing your identity as a child of God? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: New Short Meditation: “Promise you’ll think about it”