The Price Of True Success

The Price of True Success

Galatians 2:11-21

Dr. Jim Denison

A friend taped a cartoon to my study door this week. It pictures a very frazzled-looking man, sitting next to an excited woman, with a huge stack of money on the table in front of them. The sign at the table says, “Criticize the Pastor: $5.” The woman says to the man, “We paid off the sanctuary. Wanna shoot for a new education wing?”

The fact that we’re in the midst of a stewardship emphasis and capital campaign makes the timing of my friend’s gift less than gracious, wouldn’t you say?

The Gallup organization recently released a poll showing that one-third of all Americans suffer from low self-image. There are no statistics for pastors, but our ratio must be even higher, with friends like mine. Gallup considers low self-image the chief psychological malady of our day.

We all struggle with this issue. Every one of us here this morning, and every person we drove past to get here, has something in their life of which they’re ashamed. A failure, a secret, a hidden pain. We try to compensate for our failure, to validate ourselves, to make ourselves acceptable. We are driven to perform, to possess, to be successful, so we can be people of worth. But we never quite succeed. It’s never enough.