February and March were two of the best business months I have seen in several years. And they were back-to-back! It is amazing how good my attitude can be when business is going so well. The problem is that business does not always go so well, right? When business is not going well, frustration sets in. And it does not take long!
Someone once explained to me how frustration happens. Simply put, frustration occurs when reality fails to meet our expectations. Think about that for a minute. When driving in traffic, frustration grows when others do not clear the way for us as we might expect them to. When waiting on your food in a restaurant, frustration pops up if it takes longer than we expected. I am sure you can think of a few examples yourself!
So the same is true when business is good for a period of time. We begin to expect the success to continue. On the surface, that expectation does not sound unreasonable. In fact, some business books would encourage this expectation. “It drives you to push,” they might say.
I won’t argue that, but I would suggest that there is another element going on that you should consider. I would suggest you may need to consider changing your perspective.
Regardless of what certain preachers on TV may tell you, this life is not about prosperity. It is not about our comfort or wealth in this world. If you look at Scripture closely, you will see something very different.
Jesus promised us trouble in this world (John 16:33). James told us to consider it pure joy when we face trials (James 1:2). Paul told us God works everything out for good, but he also said He is conforming us to the likeness of Jesus (Romans 8:28-29). That is a good thing, but it does not always feel good to the one being conformed!
I promise I am not trying to drag you down. There is good news coming…
Follow me closely on this. If you continue to read Scripture, you will also realize that Jesus has overcome the world that gives us trouble (John 16:33). At the end of the story, every knee will bow (Philippians 2:9-11). Your work will be put through the fire and all that survives the fire will bring you reward (1 Corinthians 3:13-14).
Having said all of that, the following steps will help you to eliminate the frustration that results from unmet expectations:
2. Believe what it says.
3. Allow it to shape your expectations.
If you will follow these 3 steps, you will start seeing the BIG picture from God’s eyes – an eternal perspective – and pretty soon your frustration with business will fade.
I am not at all suggesting that you stop working or that you let go of the business and just sit back and hope it gets better. You still have to keep doing the right things you were doing when things were good. I am assuming that you will continue doing the basics. Your people are depending on you.
No, I am telling you to change your expectations. Match your expectations with Scripture and watch them meet with reality. The closer together your expectations come to reality, the less frustration you will have. Focus on the eternal work being done through the course of doing business and you will see real success.