I'm in the dugout. 

My knuckles turn white as I grip the metal bench. I know I'm almost up, but all I can really see is the chainlink fence holding at bay the myriad of discarded bubble gum wrappers. I wish my teammates would move over. I can't see. They're all right up against the fence. I should probably stand up. Move my legs a little bit. The crowd roars, but I'm not sure why. Small bursts of light shoot through the metal diamonds of the chainlink fence and I can only guess what's happening behind the light.  

Believe me. I've been up before. Last at bat I hit a double that brought me to seven RBIs on the day. No lie. The crowd was deafening. The sweaty neighborhood kids even stopped by to see what was happening. It felt good, but I made sure I used a little humility to disguise my pride.  

But all of that is in the past. My high school baseball achievements I had worked so hard for had left me with a temporary satisfaction. It's like smelling a meal without actually eating it. There's a longing within every achievement. The more I achieve, the less I feel I have. Why strive for something at all if it only satisfies for a little while? What are my motives for doing my best?

The crack of the bat snaps me back in. I realize that I'm choosing to perform in front of my biggest critic. Myself. I've been trying to live up to my own expectations. 

Why are we working? Why are we doing our best? Who are we trying to please?

Fulfillment has two meanings. It can be defined as an "act", but it also can be defined as a "state of being". In the Old Testament, God prophesied that He would provide a way of salvation for all people. In Isaiah chapter 9, God assured everyone that He would send Himself as a baby to us here on earth. This actually happened. When Jesus came as the Savior of the world, he fulfilled prophecy. Thank God He came. That's the first part of the definition. 

Fulfillment also means this: "The contentment one feels when one has fulfilled a desire, need, or expectation." If you're anything like me you've probably been striving after success for a long time. Performance. I feel like I can fix things if I try hard enough. Make things bend a certain way so that I feel like I've contributed significantly to the success of a project. Here's the thing. It doesn't last. That feeling. I can't find it in my job. In my relationships. Or in leisure.

Whatever you're striving after, make sure you take a second to examine your motives honestly. The perfectionist inside of you won't ever get enough from you.

But here's the good part. Contentment is found in Jesus. Fulfillment is found in using your gifts for God's glory and for the good of your neighbor. When you know how much you're loved by God, the work you do will mean a whole lot more. 



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Fulfillment by Ryan Lee Jones






I can't find it in the confines of my job

The system's got it wrong

I can't find it in the comments online

My value isn't wrapped up

In dollars and cents


My mind makes amends

I'm done settling

I'm done settling 

We're gonna kill it

I'm done settling 

I'm done settling

I'm done settling 

We're gonna kill it


And here I stand

With heart open

Lord take my life

I will give in

This earth belongs 

To God above 

He is my love 

God is my love

God is my love