Why Do Successful Men Fail?

habits holiness leadership mindset personal development


Ambitious Christian men, you are called to a higher purpose. 

We have vision, and God has given us power and authority which all comes from our identity and who he says we are. That's why we have the power to impact and take territory in the world around us. 

This is also why we're instructed in Ephesians 6 to wear armor: because you and I are dangerous to the enemy's kingdom. And because you're dangerous, we must be careful because there are traps and snares we can get caught in.


So, why do so many successful men fail?

We see many men with the same calling on their life give in and fall to the wayside, missing the target. They don't accomplish everything they're called to do and end up getting sidelined in their mission and in their vision. 

What is that thing that if you let it in your life and give it a foothold, it will grow, expand and it will totally derail your mission?

I'm speaking to you from your future, not from where you may find yourself today, but speaking to you from that place that you're called to inhabit; that place you're called to walk in.


Temptations are everywhere

They're around every corner. They're on our devices. They're in our pockets. 

There's so many things that are calling to us from the world that have the potential to trip us up and if we linger just a little too long or we stay longer than we're meant to stay it can WILL derail us. 

When God created you, he placed a call on your life because you are that important. 

You were created to influence all of us and it doesn't matter where you're planted. 

Maybe you won't be the president of the United States, or the CEO of a company but you are still created to influence. The way this works in the kingdom realm of God is that as you're faithful in the little things you’re trusted with bigger things (Luke 16:10). 

As God imparts vision and you partner with that vision, your ability to influence and expand grows and goes from level to level (see Cor 3:18). 

If you're disappointed you're not exactly where you want to be or if you're in the gap from where you feel you're called to be and where you're standing right now, keep reading. 


Every Sin Falls into Three Categories 

Every sin can be traced back to these three categories. On this site and in several episodes of Raising the Standard, we’ve talked about the anatomy of a temptation, how temptations come at us, flesh, body, and spirit, always working against our internal alignment because God created us first to be in alignment, spirit, soul, and body. We’ve covered how the way the enemy tempts us is always the reverse order of God’s design

I want to add another layer to that because in 1 John 2:16 we’re told another way to view all sin: 

For all that is in the world—the lust and sensual craving of the flesh and the lust and longing of the eyes and the boastful pride of life [pretentious confidence in one’s resources or in the stability of earthly things]—these do not come from the Father, but are from the world.

We have three distinct “categories” of sin. We see the lust of the flesh, we the lust of the eyes, and we also see the boastful pride of life. 


We see Satan try this on Jesus in the wilderness

When Satan approaches him he goes after the lust of the flesh. What's desirable for food? Turn these stones into bread. Next, lust of the eyes; he takes Jesus to a high place and shows him all the kingdoms of the world. Jesus had to physically see what the enemy was showing him. So there's something connected to our sight that is part of sin if we give into it.

And thirdly, we see the pride of life in the example tempting Jesus to show who he was. “Throw yourself down if you're really the son of God and show me you're proud of who you are. Step into that title and that status!”

We also see these same three categories in the garden of Eden. The lust of the flesh; the fruit was good for food. Lust of the eyes; the tree was pleasant to the eyes. And then the pride of life; desiring to make oneself wise. 

Sin is deceptive in nature; it shows up in a different way than you may be expecting it. 

Its origin has to do with Lucifer. He was the cherub that fell. After he falls, God now calls him Satan, and our enemy shows up with the same strategy that he enticed Adam and Eve with and unsuccessfully tried on Jesus in the wilderness. 

Well, I'm going to give you three ways that I want you to be on guard of. And when I say this for you guys, I'm saying it for me.


1. Willpower is a Limited Resource

When we talk about willpower, we must understand it’s a limited resource. It's finite. You only get so much of it each day. When you're rundown, when you're tired, or when you're stressed, your willpower is depleted.

When you're stressed and when you're tired, usually at the end of the day, or there's a stressful moment, willpower gets used up. You don't have enough left, and you start to drift. You can start to make bad decisions or do things that are out of character with your daily routine. 

And you notice this is usually when you start to deviate from your routines and your rituals. 

How do you handle stress? 

How do you handle it when you're down? How do you handle it when life throws you a curve ball and your emotions get tweaked or something gets triggered? That is something we have to be careful for. 

When we're tired, rundown, and we're stressed, if we don't have the proper boundaries, guidelines, and accountability, we can end up falling or making a bad judgment. 


2. You Need to Pay Attention to How You Compartmentalize Things 

The next thing I've noticed, and guys, I've noticed this in my life too, and this is just a trait of all men. I write about it in The Standard: Discovering Jesus as the Standard For Masculinity; I talk about how we're so programmed from a young age to operate in boxes. We have the “work” box, we have the “school” box, we have a box for when we're home, we have another one for when we're around friends, and we show up differently in all of those scenarios because we're very good at compartmentalizing

We have to be careful because when you compartmentalize, it's easy to say, this is what I do when I'm home, but when I'm out or when I'm alone. And when we're in that box where we're isolated and we're compartmentalizing, we can end up justifying what we do in one area because it doesn't affect these other boxes in my life, be it school, work, or family. 


3. Success Can Lead To Entitlement 

A lot of you reading this are entrepreneurs or businessmen; you’re working in corporate or you're building your own business and you're successful. You have accomplished a lot and have achieved a level of success in your life, and with that can come some entitlement. 

But what I've seen with businessmen and entrepreneurs is not so much that we are always looking to take on risk, but we're looking for opportunities and that can also spill over with opportunities to sin or opportunities to fall. We wind up taking opportunities to take a shortcut, or doing something that we don't want to do. 

So entitlement, a mentality that says “I deserve it”, a mentality that says I don't need someone to check in on me, I'm good, I'm running the company, I surround myself with people that say yes, no one's really gonna question what I do.” All of these things set us up for a fall. 

So whether you're stressed, tired, you are successful and you're seeing some things, some attitudes of entitlement or something that could lead even to a break in your walls, we need to guard against these. 


You Need to Build a Battle Plan

You need to have boundaries in your life to be aware of these desires, and things that sneak in really subtly because that's the nature of deception. It never shows up as super dark, evil stuff. It shows up as something that's rooted in independence, something that we want, something that we desire, and we have to guard against these. 

And the reason we're guarding against these is not just because we're afraid of falling, it's because we wanna succeed. It's because we wanna achieve and maximize our potential and be everything God says we are called to be and also called to do.


If You're Feeling Isolated and Stuck, Don't Stay There!

As a Christian you can be spiritually SAVED but STRUGGLING with things like sin and temptation. Called to an overcoming life while you are being overcome. 

If you know you could use a community with other Kingdom-driven high-performing men and action steps to overcome besetting sin, or stay strong and resist temptation, then The Unfair Advantage email challenge is for you. 

When you learn to partner with your unfair advantage, you will step into your mission with power. You'll learn how to live dangerously the way God created you to. 

If that's you and you're ready, then join the challenge today!




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