The Best Rating

For years I have run an online business on one of the large internet sales platforms. One of the important factors of my business deals with the customer rating of my past performance.  I not only receive monetary benefits from a high rating but it helps potential customers understand my selling history and honesty. It is easy to see the results from my actions, because I am incentivized to be successful. This has built-in motivation to excel in performance.

There is nothing wrong with this kind of goal but this accomplishment, along with all other physical pursuits, is not lasting. As Christians, it is critically important that we do not let these kinds of physical desires become the end-all in our daily lives. We must strive for something greater, something that the world sees as a closed-minded rejection of “enlightened” understanding. We must, by worldly standards, become fools if we are to please God. “But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty” (1 Corinthians 1:27).

The world is brimming with the proud. Whether it is because of accomplishment, wisdom or wealth, mankind has again built a tower to glorify themselves. But God sees this attitude, as He did in Babel, with the same disdain.  Christ tells the church of the Laodiceans: “… you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:17).  And, as is prophesied, mankind will soon see all of the ungodliness that they have built fall into ruin. Greed can never be satiated. Instead, addicts will try to fix their greed with more of the same. This attitude, as Jude states, will lead to destruction: “Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah” (Jude 11).

Paul also understood the effects this arrogance could have on those that have been called out of this world: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (I Timothy 6:10). Our sense of accomplishment, even in the daily aspects of our lives, must hinge on God. We must be entrenched in our faith if we have any hope of pleasing God. John states, “… for whoever is begotten by God conquers the world. And the victory that conquers the world is our faith” (1 John 5:4, New American Bible).

Success that leads to true victory begins with and dwells on the love of God. There can be no greater accomplishment, no greater motivation to succeed, than to be told, having spent a life dedicated to pleasing God, “Well done, good and faithful servant… Enter into the joy of your lord” (Matthew 25:21).