You can be the most influential, powerful, rich, handsome or beautiful person in the world and still be miserable. Success does not breed or equal godliness.
A modern day example of this is New England quarterback Tom Brady.
After being drafted in the 6th round of the NFL Draft and sitting out his first season, Brady has taken his Patriots to six Super Bowls, which is the most of any NFL quarterback in history. Four of those Super Bowls the Patriots have won. Brady has won two league MVP awards, been to eleven Pro Bowls and helped the Patriots win more division titles than any other team in history.
Oh, and he has also won more playoff games (twenty-two) than any other quarterback in history.
In short, Brady is a one of the greatest quarterbacks in history.
But not too long after he won his 3rd Super Bowl Title in 2004, Brady was interviewed by Steve Kroft of CBS News. One of the questions Brady was asked was this – “This whole experience – this whole upward trajectory– what have you learned about yourself? What kind of an effect does it have on you?”
Listen to this surprising answer given by Brady – “Well, I put incredible amounts of pressure on me. When you feel like you’re ultimately responsible for everyone and everything, even though you have no control over it, and you still blame yourself if things don’t go right — I mean, there’s a lot of pressure. A lot of times I think I get very frustrated and introverted, and there’s times where I’m not the person that I want to be. Why do I have three Super Bowl rings, and still think there’s something greater out there for me? I mean, maybe a lot of people would say, ‘Hey man, this is what is.’ I reached my goal, my dream, my life. Me, I think: God, it’s gotta be more than this. I mean this can’t be what it’s all cracked up to be. I mean I’ve done it. I’m 27. And what else is there for me?”
Kroft then asked Brady what else there is and all Brady could come up with is family, friends and football.
Just because you achieve the kind of success that Brady has does not guarantee you will ever be fulfilled in life. What is clearly missing from Brady’s life is a genuine contentment in God’s work for his life. And ultimately, unless I have missed something, what is missing from his life is Jesus Christ.
Listen, you won’t find complete and total satisfaction in anything of this world. Not your career. Not your toys. Not entertainment. Not your favorite sports team. Not your children. Not your spouse. Nothing compares to the satisfaction that can only be found in communing with the Creator.
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Ps 16:11).