By what do we benchmark success?

At about 7pm yesterday I did a little happy dance of success because I ticked a box in my task list that said “Complete and submit Research Assignment”. It was a day early. I was pleased.

Which got me thinking… was that really the success of my day? Completing a task?

What else did I do yesterday and were there other things worthy of the tag #success?

I had a good chat on the phone with someone that I’m building a mentoring relationship with. That was a success.

I wrote a love letter and birthday note to one of my daughters. Reading it filled her with delight. That was a success.

I proofed the Church Life Group Devotions for Term 4 – which is a success not because it’s another completed task, but because of what it represents in terms of growth in people’s lives.

I had a date night with my wife, which equated to hiding out in the study watching iView, but that was a success too – particularly in terms of sowing time into each other and our marriage.

What do we benchmark our success by?
Another task completed?
One less thing to do?

Or, as Christians, do we consider success in the context of:
1. Jesus – and bringing glory to His name
2. People – and encouraging them and sowing into their lives?

In the context of those 2 things – my assignment as a task in itself is not a great success.

But in the context of Jesus – completing that assignment taught me more about how He desired the early church to operate and further understand how He wants us to reach more than 3 billion people who are yet to hear the name of Jesus and the joy of the Gospel.

So what does that mean for my day, for your day, for the week?

I may not need to change my task list.
I still have to answer the phone and have meetings and tick lots of things off my list.

But I need to consider success through the lens of Jesus and His glory and in the context of people and their lives.

And as I increasingly benchmark my success in this way, the reality is that my task list will shift accordingly. I will spend more time focussed on and investing in people and opportunities that equate to much more than ticking a box or crossing something off a list.

What does success mean to you?

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