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You might not make it to the top, but it’s alright

Updated on February 15, 2012

You give me a Mountain

Making it to the top

All my life I have heard people say you have to do this or you have to do that in order to make it in life; to be successful.

Some people interpret that concept as “making it to the top” or “hitting the big time”.

There are even pastors who preach “prosperity through giving” or emphasizing in their opinion that God‘s will is for everyone to be successful and wealthy.

Such pastors are on both sides of the issue. Pastors like Joel Olsten are somewhat diplomatic about the whole thing and simply say if you give all you can give to God through the church (mainly his 30,000+ member church) God will bless you and give it back tenfold.

Rev. Ike on the other hand simply says, “I want money” and since you don’t want it, “I want you to give it to me” and God will show me how to spend it……..on me. I have never understood how people can be so gullible.

People go without insurance, healthcare, adequate housing and education all the while giving unbelievable amounts to these ministries.

The problem with all of this; even Jesus recognized there would always be poor people. His sermon on the mount was somewhat both personal consolation to and commentary on the very subject.

From Dr. Norman Vincent Peal and the “Power of Positive Thinking” to Dr Robert Schuller’s 365 Positive Thoughts Hope for Today and Tomorrow and Dr. Denis Waitley’s The Psychology of Winning (used by professional athletes and corporations in the 1980’s and 1990’s) the emphasis for at least the past 40 years has been “Everyone can and should make it to the top”.

Now I am a very positive and ever moving forward individual. I believe and have taught always that anyone is capable of doing and accomplishing anything.

Hub 9 of 30 in 30 Day Challenge


Most will never make it

The reality however, is that no matter how hard some people work or try, there will always be those individuals who will never make it to the top. In fact, my experience (after over thirty years of professional counseling) as negative as this might seem, is that most people will never make it to the top.

Not everyone can handle it; in fact most people can’t handle it. This is evidenced by the scores of once multimillion dollar athletes and other celebrities who once were but are no more. They are no longer wealthy and no longer famous and often if famous; no longer at the top.

Even those who do make it, often can't handle it.

When I was a full time pastor and counselor/psychologist, I saw people from all walks of life. I counseled professional athletes, executive chefs for plush restaurants on Miami Beach, big name attorneys, mayors and state legislators, fighter pilots and even a couple of judges. They came to me because they were having trouble living at the top; what they had dreamed of and reached for all their life was often more than they could handle. They wanted the proverbial train of life to stop so they could get off because their dream turned out to be a nightmare.

In many cases they were on the top of the world looking for a way to get back down the mountain safely and securely and not get hurt.

So a few words to both the anxious and wise, it’s OK if you never reach your goal as long as you keep trying.

That’s right; I said it is OK if you don’t make it to the top.

This is not meant to be a license to just give up and stop trying to improve one’s life; to the contrary. It is simply meant to be personal advice from this pastor/psychologist's thirty plus years of counseling as well as proclamations from God’s word, that you can let go of your anxiety over trying on your own to achieve and let God have His way in your life.

God really does want to help you if you'll let Him.

Every person is important and every person’s role in life is significant to both God and man; no matter how large or small. And in this very difficult financial time where professionals all over our nation are finding it emotionally difficult to take a lesser position, let me say again, it is OK. You still honor both God and man in your attempt to work at something. It can and will probably get better.

Let me say that I don't just talk the talk here; I also walk the walk. I have lost everything I have three separate times. I have literally done almost every kind of job out there to get through college, four seminaries, internship and grad school and even after receiving my PhD, I had to revert back from time to time to Insurance adjusting, Auto Body Work, Cutting lawns, being a handy man; in short whatever it took.

My friends, be of good cheer. God is gracious, He is always there; sometimes when we don't even recognize it.

We are all needed to make life work.

So don’t worry if you never make to the top, it’s still OK and you'll be just fine.

©Copyright 2012 Dr. Lee W. Outlaw III

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More Writing by Dr Lee Outlaw:

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    • Drtruthman profile image

      Drtruthman 6 years ago from Harlingen, Texas

      Thank you Debbie for taking the time to read and comment. I appreciate so much.

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 6 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Dr.Lee this is excellent... thank you for writing this... You are very smart. so glad you are who you are I am so blessed to read your hubs.

      God Bless you my dear.


    • Drtruthman profile image

      Drtruthman 6 years ago from Harlingen, Texas

      Great comment Christy. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Yes indeed we need to be more gentle with ourselves.

      Thanks again. Lee

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Lee, There are several great concepts here. While goals should be set to give us motivation they may change over the space of days, weeks, or even years as we change as well. I think we have to be more gentle with ourselves. Great hub.

    • Drtruthman profile image

      Drtruthman 6 years ago from Harlingen, Texas

      Great comment. Thanks for the read, comment and voting. I appreciate greatly.

    • Druid Dude profile image

      Druid Dude 6 years ago from West Coast

      Good hub. I like to think of it this way: There are 6 billion people on the planet. How many can you name?