Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Successfulness versus Fruitfulness

I was reading from the writings of Henri Nouwen yesterday and came across a rather remarkable paragraph. It was so good and challenging and right, that I want to share it with you (with a few of my own thoughts interjected, for better or worse). I pray that God would speak to you and into your exact life situation this week as you reflect on Nouwen's words.

"There is a difference between successfulness and fruitfulness. Success comes from strength, control and respectability. A successful person has the energy [and skill] to create something, to keep control over its development, and to make it available in large quantities. Success brings many rewards and often fame.

“Fruits, however, come from weakness and vulnerability [and trials and problems and perseverance--see James chapter 1 in the New Testament]….Community is the fruit born through shared brokenness, and intimacy is the fruit that grows through touching another's wounds. Let's remind one another that what brings us true joy is not successfulness but fruitfulness."