Two Kinds of Striving
What’s the difference between ambition and selfish ambition?
Is your motive pure or not?
There are many litmus tests for motive, but one question that will give you a quick assessment is this:
Is there a wound?
Is my ambition motivated by a wound?
Examples of Deceptive Motivations for Success
Some ambitious people present themselves as nice people.
Some ambitious people present themselves as inspirationally confident.
Some ambitious people present themselves as dedicated workers.
The American Success Myth
Accomplishments don’t heal wounds.
Achievements don’t heal pain.
Most people pursuing happiness are really running away from unhappiness.
The America creed says this: cures everything.
No amount of success will heal a wound.
The American Dream vs. The Heavenly Vision
The American Dream is based on hard work.
The heavenly vision is based on rest.
The Power of Rest
The blessing of the promised land was not just about real estate but about rest.
To have the real estate without the rest would not really be living the promise.
This is less obvious when reading the Old Testament because, if you’re reading it without insight, the references to rest seem to be about a practical matter connected with conquest.
- Deuteronomy 12:8–10
- Hebrews 4:1-3
- Hebrews 4:7-8
What’s the Catch?
If the promise for rest extends to us today, why are we so eager to work?
The promise to rest hinges on the biblical practice of and .
One of the secrets to rest is .
When you hear and obey God as a way of life, pressure leaves you and sits with God.
Making Rest Practical
- Go to Jesus
- Cease from your work: Exchange your for His rest.
- Go to Jesus
- Take on God’s Work: Exchange your yoke for God’s yoke.
- Am I pursuing the American Dream or the Heavenly Vision?
- If this is the Heavenly Vision, where is the grace and peace?
- Once you’ve confirmed that you are pursuing the Heavenly vision: Receive His power to do His work.
- Exchange your ways for God’s ways.
Rest is a gift.
You know you are resting and in faith when you are at peace.
“Peace is the receipt” —Dr. Hart Ramsey
Gentleness and Ease are both indicators of that peace.
To experience the gentleness and ease of Jesus, you have to move at the pace of hear and obey.
- The Heavenly Vision will be the natural outcome of your devotion to God.(Matthew 6:33)
Setting the Tone
- 1 Timothy 1:18–19
- 1 Timothy 4:14
- 2 Timothy 1:6
- Deuteronomy 4:5–8
Pool of Bethesda
Global and Multilingual
House of Prayer
Changing the Default Setting
Hidden Well of Innovation
- Proverbs 2:6-7
- 2 Chronicles 16:7–9
The Big Three
Don’t Be Arrogant
- Deuteronomy 7:7–10
Be Confident (in the Lord)
To Whom Much is Given, Much Is Required
- Luke 12:48
© Joshua D. Smith, Ph.D., 2022