I am fortunate to be around very wise and godly people on a regular basis. In fact, much of the material for this blog comes from their mouths, whether they realize it or not! I recently heard one of them say something that stuck with me. It was especially impactful for me because it was convicting! While the phrase “to honor God” is part of our company mission statement, I have strayed from this idea as my central goal. My friend’s quote made this obvious to me.
To Honor God?
As I said, our company mission statement includes the phrase “to honor God” as the central goal of our company. It is this goal that drove me in the beginning of my journey to run the business for eternal impact. It is the desire to honor God in everything I do that was my drive for the longest time. Unfortunately, other goals have begun to distract me.
Before I go any further, take a look at his quote and think about it:
Quit competing and live to honor God. Both will result in our best. One will receive rewards in eternity and the other now.
Choose To Compete?
Do you get what he was saying? We can choose to compete rather than simply seeking to honor God in all we do. We can compete with other businesses. We can compete with our neighbors or our family members. Maybe you are competing with childhood friends or an old nemesis. Many compete with everyone, not satisfied unless they are the best in the world at a certain skill or measurement.
While competition can be a good motivator, we need to ask ourselves if it is the best one. We need to ask ourselves if competition brings out the best in us or not. Then we need to think about whether a better motivator could simply be the desire to honor God.
What if, before taking any action at all, you ask yourself if it is God-honoring? What if, when approaching a business strategy, you decided not to look at the competition to decide what to do? What if you decided instead to determine how to honor God through your strategy?
Clearly, God is not honored with mediocrity, right? So what would it look like if you made it your absolute goal to devise a business strategy that would honor God? It would have to be a strategy of excellence. Driven by this goal, you would not be able to accept less than the best, would you?
Difference Is Timing
Just as my friend said, whether competing or seeking to honor God, the result will be our best. The difference is in the timing and longevity of the rewards.
If our motivation is to compete with the best, then we will likely find reward in the marketplace. This reward will most likely be financial and will come sooner. However, if we choose to honor God as our motivation, then rewards will also come. They will just come in an eternity that never ends.
Maybe there are immediate financial rewards, maybe not. God does not promise that. However, He does promise to reward us in eternity (Matthew 16:27). He promises that our rewards will not fade or suffer loss (1 Peter 1:3-4). He cannot go back on His promises.
I have often allowed the idea of competition to take my focus off of my goal to honor God. While there have been some positive results in some areas, the overriding result is usually one of frustration. In fact, that’s another result of competition…anything short of winning it all is disappointing, even depressing.
Of course, seeking to honor God will not always result in actually pleasing Him (you WILL miss the mark at times!). At the same time, the frustration is not nearly as debilitating when we miss this goal. There are satisfaction and joy that remain, even in failure to hit this mark.
So which way will you go?
Are you guilty of competing?
Which rewards would you prefer?
How will you honor God?