Do you desire to excel, succeed and prosper in what you are doing by the end of this year? Is your quest to fulfill your own desire hindering the fulfillment of God’s desire in your life? Many times we put our ambitions ahead of our God given vision or assignment. Unfortunately, you will never be your best pursuing your desires, nor will they be accepted by God. This post encourages you to pursue God’s plan for you rather than your ambition because of your love for Him.

So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.” He said to him, “Feed My lambs.” He said to him again a second time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.” He said to him, “Tend My sheep.” He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.” Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.” – John 21:15-17 (NKJV).

Yea, thou shalt go forth from him, and thine hands upon thine head: for the Lord hath rejected thy confidences, and thou shalt not prosper in them – Jeremiah 2:37 (KJV).

Many times, Christians pursue other things other than what God had assigned them to do and they will be praying that the Lord will help them succeed in them. This is putting ambition ahead of vision. However, God doesn’t back up any assignment He didn’t give you.

No matter how right your work may be, if it hinders or takes the place of God’s assignment it will not be accepted before God and you will not prosper in them. Obedience is paramount to the Father, and if you love Him you will obey Him despite the seemed inconvenience. It is one thing to do the right thing and another to do the right thing at the right time. Your love for God helps you to do the right thing at the right time.

Looking at the story in John 21: 1-17, surely there wasn’t anything wrong with fishing but it was hindering Peter from focusing on the Lord’s assignment for him. Obviously, Peter loved fishing but he needed to put it aside to be able fulfill Christ’s plan for him. He was the rock upon which the church of Christ was to be built (Matthew 16:18), and going back to fishing wasn’t going to allow that to happen. Jesus had to ask him, “Do you love me more than these?” Christ inquired of Peter’s love for him three times to get his attention and communicate to him the importance of him feeding His people and not going back to fishing.

Financial prosperity and career success are two major areas where Christians struggle to choose between ambition and vision. It is good to be rich and successful, but where your ambition to be rich or successful in life is hindering the Father’s vision for you, you will have to reconsider. The truth is that God will reject those confidences and you will not prosper in them (Jeremiah 2:37). Nevertheless, pursuing the Lord’s vision for you will surely make you to prosper financially and be successful in life. Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and every other thing will be added unto you (Matthew 6:33).

The good news is that your love for God will always help you to choose vision against ambition. Love for God will make you choose Him and not the blessings He can give you. It will make you to put aside anything that will try to compete with your walk with Christ. You will obey Him no matter how difficult it may be to do so. Love for God is a living force that will always propel you towards doing the will of God (John 14:15, 21). So, I ask you, “Do you love the Lord more than what you are pursuing for the year?” If your answer is yes, then know that you have the energy, grace and will to obey Jesus, and make a u-turn to the right path if you are on the wrong path presently.

At the beginning of one year, I started one stream of income and it took all my time. I wasn’t studying or praying the way I used to. Most of the things I was supposed to do were not touched. Few months later I added another stream of income, making my issue worse. However, in the midst of them all, in my spirit I knew I was treading on the wrong path. I kept justifying my steps, that I needed more sources of income for certain reasons and that can’t be bad. Nevertheless, I kept asking God to show me clearly whether I was on the wrong path because I wasn’t at peace within. I was ready to cut off if I were to be sure of God’s will. Finally, during a particular program I attended, the Lord spoke expressly through three ministers and personally gave me Jeremiah 2:37 – ‘He had rejected my confidences and I wasn’t going to prosper in them.’ My love for God and desire to do His will gave me the strength to cut off. I stopped them. People queried my actions, but this time I had all the evidences I needed to stand my ground. I was assured that if I run with the vision given to me by God, the provisions will be made available for those my reasons. I have peace now, and I am running with the vision full blast.

In conclusion, what are you running with – an ambition or a vision? Know that you will not go far with ambition. Moses didn’t go far with his ambition to fight for his people while under Pharaoh. But when he ran with the vision of bringing his people out of Egypt, he became a mighty prophet of God that would never be forgotten. Choose vision over ambition today, and you will go far being the best that God wants you to be.

Jesus is Lord!

Ngozi Nwoke
Grace and peace of God be unto you.

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Image by Jeff Turner