Vonette Bright

Ambition is defined as “an eager or strong desire to achieve something.” 

What are your ambitions?  How do they line up with God's ambitions for you?  That is the pivotal question isn't it?  

Although ambition can be a positive trait, the Bible gives us evidence that it can be considered a negative trait.  Numerous times in the New Testament, believers are warned against “selfish ambition.”  This is ambition that seeks to satisfy one’s own desires above those of God or even the best interests of the people around you.


In Philippians 2:3 we read, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.”  Be watchful of your motives.  It is always better to act with humility and concern for others.


Dr. Ted Engstrom, the leader of Youth for Christ and World Vision for almost four decades, believes ambition is a positive trait when it is done under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.  Dr. Engstrom says,

“I asked the Lord, in the midst of strong ambition, to make sure that I understood what His will was for my life.  God said He’d guide me with His eye—I leaned heavily on that.”


He was referring to Psalm 32:8, in which God says: “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.’  Dr. Engstrom is talking about ambition that is in line with God’s will.


Paul was himself ambitious, and in Romans 15:20, we are told the reason for his ambition: “It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known.”  Paul’s desire to spread the good news of Christ was a godly ambition.


Dear friend, God has given us ambition to keep us striving toward new goals.  But this drive is subject to the leadership of Christ.  Be ambitious for God.  Seek Him first and ask Him to watch over you and guide you. His ambitions for you are far better than any you can come up with on your own!  Strive to let all you do bring Him glory.  That’s godly ambition!


“Therefore I will teach them—this time I will teach them My power and might.  Then they will know that My name is the Lord.” Jeremiah 16:21


By Vonette Bright, My Heart is in His Hands—Winter

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