When Success Happens to Someone Else

highlights of a sermon by Pastor Afolabi Oladele

Have you been tempted to stage your own palace coup in the corners of your home or office? Are you willing to give up your own personal ambition, like Jonathan did, for a higher calling? Are you willing to accept a calling that could mean sitting on the bench? Are you willing to accept what might involve behind the scenes work that goes unnoticed?

Sometimes some of us have to sit on the bench and it’s not because we can’t play centre forward, but the Coach (GOD) decides who plays centre forward and who sits on the bench. I Corinthians 12:11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

1) Don’t see those currently in centre forward as obstacles to your dream. Go beyond the mindset of I’m-among-the-chosen to a mind that asks Who-has-God-chosen?

2) Don’t question HIS prerogative neither doubt HIS love for you just because you are currently sitting on the bench. Romans 12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another

3) Recognize the position God has placed you in. Jonathan knew that God had chosen David and he made this (the fact that GOD had chosen David) his reference point in all his actions towards David. Jonathan’s display of personal friendship, his acceptance of David’s kingship, his transfer of royalty, his acceptance and celebration of David’s success, and his devotion to David’s life all had their reference point to that fact that GOD had chosen David. 1 Samuel 18:1-4 And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul………. Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.

1 Samuel 13:3 shows that Jonathan was equally a noted warrior, yet he was ready to step back for God’s chosen man, David. (See also 1 Samuel 20:30b) 
And Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba, and the Philistines heard of it. And Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear. 1 Samuel 13:3

4) Your reference point should always be what is God saying, what is God doing?

5) Understand God’s will and purpose and celebrate other’s success.

6) Remember that God knows what He is doing.

7) Relinquish the right to be angry when those around you make mistakes, even when another person’s advancement means you are not moving forward.

God commands sacrifice, humility and trust in these times of apparently uneven spread of equality, when our flesh is carrying out me-first.


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