Ambition can lead to a trail of hurt people and damaged relationships behind us; it can lead to burnt out people incapable of sustaining the pressure of the pursuit of more; it can mean we will do almost anything to achieve what we set out for even sacrificing the values of our own life and once we reach that place then our downfall is never far away.
Meet our ambitious young wealthy man ….
“Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?” “Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.” “Which ones?” he inquired. Jesus replied, ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honour your father and mother,’ and ‘love your neighbour as yourself.” “All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?” (Matthew 19 v 16-20)
This is an incredible young man in that he has kept not only the 5 commandments Jesus mentioned but when he says he has done so he is meaning he has kept them all. This is not unusual as we also know the Apostle Paul would say that he was blameless with regard to keeping the law (Phil 3:6).
Jesus states the 5 commandments perhaps because they are the ones focused on our connections with people or maybe simply because in stating 5 commandments he is meaning them all. In any case, the young man has kept them all.
Be careful when you have evidence that you are doing well in comparison to others.
Be careful when you believe you are pleasing God because of what you do.
Be careful when everyone can see how hard you work.
This wheel of life will demand more and more but it will never satisfy.
The answer was not in his performance or his obedience, he didn’t lack there. We can all get to the place where we are doing everything that is needed but we are still not satisfied. The answers to life are never found in the exterior.
Check your ambition today in what is your true motivation for your pursuit of more.
Pastors, why do you want your churches to grow?
Church members why do you want to take up that position within church?
Parents why do you want your children to succeed?
Workers why are you working every hour in the day?
Ask yourself the hard question: Why? Why am I pursuing more?