Thursday, July 29, 2010

What Defines My Sucess?

“The scripture says, “Human beings cannot live on bread alone, but need every word that God speaks.” Matthew 4:4

I was looking at a high school picture posted by one of my batch mates in FB. I can’t help but smile as sleeping memories awakened inside my head. We were young, hopeful, and excited; we were on the verge of entering the door to the next chapter of our life – college. We were also naïve, and clueless of what real life was all about. Way back then not many, if ever there was at all, had foreseen his or her life today. And this included me.

MCCNHS CAT Commencement Exercise

Life is so amazing. When this picture was taken who would have thought that Sonny K will become an Expat in China, that Sonny S will become a professor in Mapua, that Elmer and Lorraine will migrate to the US, that Razel would become a real estate investor, that I would be blogging God’s words, and many more. Who would have also thought that Rommel and Sherwin would join our Creator before I can write this article? Not one among my batch mates, and I except He who knows everything.

The book of Genesis in the Bible says, “God created us in His image and likeness”. What many of us don't realize is that there is a very deep implication to this passage. More often than not, we see in us a quacking duck when deep behind those fluffy feathers is a sharp and powerful eagle waiting to be released. God designed us such that we can do anything we want…if we just believe it with all our heart, mind and soul. It’s not a question whether you can do it. The real question posed to each and every one of us is, “Do you believe you can do it?” It was Henry Ford who once said, “If you think you can, if you think you can’t, you’re right.” Take it from the man who had accomplished so much in his lifetime, and whose legacy lingers until now.

What it takes to succeed in life? I think this is the question that many of us had the opportunity to wrestle with. (There are others who are so busy fighting for survival that they can’t even ponder on this question.) Work hard? Work smart? Stay competitive and outshine the others? Get more education? Cheat your way to the top? Connections? Networks?

This is my belief. Your success will not be defined by money, power, or fame, but by your dreams. Yes, it’s your dreams in life that will define ‘your’ success. The dreams of other people definitely will not define your success. Their success is their success, and your success is yours; you don't have to pursue the dreams of others to become successful. Ergo, if you do not have dreams in life now then you are like a dry leaf floating in a cold lake. You go will where the wild wind will take you. No wonder you don’t feel alive, you’re not truly happy…

When this high school picture was taken, I was a dry leaf. I had all notions of what was success – become a hotshot in a big company, become rich, become famous, collect a horde of beautiful girls, and other usual stuffs. But I had no real dream that I can call my own. Don’t ask me why, it’s a long story. But now I can tell you that I have ‘real’ dreams in life. How did I come to know my dreams in life?

I am an electrical design engineer by profession. I put resistors, capacitors, diodes, and transistors here and there to get the desired circuit performance and functions. Likewise, when our Master Craftsman created us, he put specific functions into the fiber of our being such that when we finally become a moving, talking and thinking flesh, our being will yearn to follow our designed function. In short, we are designed by God for specific purposes. Your God-given purposes become your ‘real’ dreams.

I found my ‘real’ dreams when I finally understand Matthew 4:4. It means that we are both flesh and spirit. Hence, we cannot live a full life by satisfying the need of our flesh alone. Above all, we have to satisfy the needs of our spirit. The flesh dies and rot, but the spirit lives on.

A few of my batch mates already joined our Creator…may they rest in peace…while the rest of us are still given the opportunity to discover and fulfill our purpose in life. Don’t you think it’s worth your time and effort to discover and fulfill yours, too? Who knows what you will accomplish 5 years from now?

Time marches on; the candle of our life will one day stop burning. And when the curtains of this world will fall upon us there is one basic question that will determine whether we will go in peace or we will go in vain: “Have you fulfilled your purpose in life?”

NEXT "How to know your purpose in life?"


  1. Hi Raoul,

    Just dropping to read your blog. Have little time as I am very busy due to our system migration. Indeed it was worth it to read what you have written here. I agree with your "dry leaf" notion for people who have no dreams.....I myself was also such person not so long ago....drifting from day to day on what I wanted to have in my life
    Let me share with you as well a favourite poem of mine which I memorized since I was still in grade relates perfectly to what you have written here.....It is titled Dreams by Langston Hughes

    Hold fast to dreams
    For if dreams die
    Life is a broken-winged bird
    That cannot fly.

    Hold fast to dreams
    For when dreams go
    Life is a barren field
    Frozen with snow.


  2. Hi ACO. Thanks for dropping by. I like the poem you shared. For most of us, our hearts are littered with pieces of our broken dreams. With so much pain encountered no wonder many of us stop dreaming and just go with the flow. I myself just started to dream again. I need to learn to become a child again; a child always think everything is possible until a clueless adult comes along the way and say, "No way!" Yes, we have to continue dreaming and striving for growth in spirit, mind, emotion, relationship, experience, finances, etc. Without dream life is indeed a cold barren field. And it doesn't have to be that way...