Must I Work Hard To Be Successful?

Mark Virkler's picture

Hmmm, what does the Bible say? Seems like my constant pushing produced internal stress, which led to a heart attack three months ago. So is there something I need to learn about living in rest, and living stress free? Obviously stress is a killer. Below is my story, followed by some key biblical principles.

My experience with stress, a heart attack and returning to rest

My stress came by taking on false responsibility. Here is what happened. I am the president of Communion With God Ministries and Christian Leadership University, which employ 27 people (most part time). I never set out to build such an entity. I set out to learn how to make Christianity work in my life and since I learn by writing, I wrote books. People have enjoyed the books and Communion With God Ministries has grown, adding Christian Leadership University and CLU School of the Spirit. Trust me: God built Communion With God Ministries. My passion is to research and write on topics which will make Christian spirituality work in my life and I am thrilled my writings have been a blessing to others.

So when I came up for air, I looked around and discovered we have a staff of 27 to whom we need to pay salaries. Since I am the founder and president, I feel I am responsible to see that this need is met. I feel stressed. How can I pay 27 salaries? I never took courses in college on business development or accounting, so stress sets in. Looking back now, I understand that I was feeling I am responsible to maintain that which God has built.

The truth is, if God built it, He will maintain it, and if He doesn’t, then it is time to dismantle it. I can occasionally forget such simple truths, and look to self rather than looking to God. Then stress takes over and I have a heart attack. Do I know better? Of course I do. I was just not operating in the revelation knowledge God had given me. Is it OK to make mistakes and suffer the consequences?  Of course it is. Does God pick us back up, brush us off and set us back on the path of life? Of course He does. Is this all acceptable? Of course it is.

I fully understand I am weak and frail (Psalm 103:14) and can and do make mistakes, but that in no way alters God's love and grace toward me. I am back on the right path, listening to God, trusting His rhema and resting in a confident belief in His abilities to perform His works in and through my life. The bottom line is that it is if fine to make mistakes, learn lessons and go on, and through this all we remain embraced in His loving arms.

I would say the principles below are clear. Don’t work on my own. Listen to God. Believe and obey what He says and I will enter into rest. Does this require diligence? Yes!  

Let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall (Hebrews 4:11)

Proverbs surely endorses a heart attitude of diligence (NASB)

  • The hand of the diligent makes rich (Proverbs 10:4) 
  • The diligent will rule (Proverbs 12:24) 
  • The soul of the diligent is made fat (Proverbs 13:4) 
  • The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage (Proverbs 21:5) 

The Bible says God does the work

  • Remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant (Deuteronomy 8:18).
  • The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, And toil addeth nothing thereto (Proverbs 10:22 JPS Tanakh 1917 - The Jewish Bible)
  • Unless the LORD builds the house, They labor in vain who build it (Psalm 127:1).
  • Whatever God has created through us promotes rest (Hebrews 4:10).

The Bible warns against laboring on my own

  • The flesh profits nothing (John 6:63) so looking to my strength to accomplish is futile.
  • One of the six foundation doctrines is "repentance from dead works" (Hebrews 6:2). A "dead work" is a work I do outside of God’s direction and empowerment.
  • Whatever we build on our own creates unrest as it must be constantly examined, reworked, defended, appreciated and approved of.

My job is to listen and obey

  • It is the Spirit who gives life … the words (rhema’s) that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life (John 6:63).
  • "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works (John 14:10).

I must BELIEVE God’s voice in order to enter into rest

  • TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS… There remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. (Hebrews 4:7-10).
  • They were not able to enter because of unbelief  (Hebrews 3:17-19).

Journaling - Mark, see ME in the cool of the day. I have the way prepared for you. Set aside ALL stress and rejoice and celebrate ME and MY CONTROL over all things. All the other gifts which I have provided to you, such as nutrition, exercise and health equipment, are to be celebrated and enjoyed in Me, and not as some substitute for Me. All life and power flows from Me and returns to Me, so celebrate Me in ALL things, and you will do fine. Do not trust in these things as something separate from Me. Ask Me to flow through these things, bringing health and life to your being and all will be well with your soul.

Additional steps of action I am taking

  • Doing a healing prayer daily which includes journaling  – I am using this prayer encounter
  • A Spirit-led worship time each evening with my autoharp, which I dusted off after it being 35 years in the closet.

Cardiac Event Series

  1. How Could I Have Been So Wrong?
  2.  Biblical Truths Related to Heart Disease
  3. Causes of Heart Disease: Inflammation, Oxidation, Sugar and Stress 
  4. Drugs, Nutrition and the Lord 
  5. Is Stress The Number One Cause Of Heart Attacks?
  6. Ever So SLOWLY Learning About Blood Pressure
  7. Common Denominators of Great Diets
  8. God Says I’m Healed Yet Symptoms Persist
  9. Symptoms Go into Remission as I Speak to My Body
  10. Does Heart Surgery Cause the Heart to Pick Up A Spirit of Fear  
  11. Must I Work Hard To Be Successful?
  12. Which of The 10 Commandments Can You Break And No One Raises An Eyebrow?
  13. Experience Rest By Learning How To Delegate 
  14. Living In Rest Requires Living At Peace With Myself and Others 
  15. For Heaven’s Sake, Celebrate!
Add new comment

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.


Results 21 - 30 of 438


Come Alive with Jesus

by Jesse and Kara Birkey

Jesse and Kara Birkey introduce a moving devotional with a daily word from God that will help you hear and experience Him in ways you never have before.

Price: $19.99
Corporate Communion with God

Corporate Communion with God

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 35 Pages

Bring the principles of how to hear God's voice to your prayer meetings with the ideas recommended in this guide. As your prayer group encounters the spirit world, there are no limits to where God may wish to take you. He may fill your hearts with visions and burdens of needs half-way around the world. He may take you into the heavenlies to reveal the activity of spiritual forces surrounding you. He may reveal to you a vision of His future purposes and draw you into calling them forth. The possibilities are as limitless and varied as is the Spirit of God.

Price: $4.95
Eden's Health Plan - Go Natural!

Eden's Health Plan - Go Natural!

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 289 Pages

Discover how you can take charge of your own health — keeping yourself young, energetic, attractive, and free of degenerative diseases! Discover the biblical injunctions on diet and health, and the amazing correlations between them and modern scientific research.

Price: $13.99
EFT for Christians

Emotional Freedom Techniques - EFT for Christians: Tapping Into God's Peace and Joy

by Charity Virkler Kayembe and Sherrie Rice Smith | 208 Pages | Published 2016

Scripture tells us that we comfort others with the comfort we ourselves have received (2 Corinthians 1:3–5). To the degree that we are healed and comforted, we can offer those same gifts much more freely to others

Price: $15.99

End-Times Prophecy

by Timothy Paul Jones, PhD | 364 p. | c2011

This is an outstanding book, which clearly and simply lays out four differing views of end time prophecy, providing scriptural support for each, showing the unique approaches each view takes, and encouraging you to understand and not judge those who disagree with you. Finally we can honor and love all people (1 Pet. 2:17) as we consider various views of interpreting end time prophecy. What a gift to the body of Christ. Thank you, Timothy Paul Jones!!!

Price: $19.95
Experiencing God Together

Experiencing God Together

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 105 Pages

This book explains how to turn small group meetings into times of dynamic sharing of revelation concerning the real life issues we face daily. It addresses how to get everyone involved, how to limit the naturally talkative, and how to keep things on track.

Price: $10.95
Flow of Life

Flow of Life

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 102 Pages

This book guides you in doing original research in any area in which you are seeking the supernatural release of divine power through your life. For example, one sample project recorded in this book is entitled, "Healing a Chronic Illness Through Receiving and Acting Upon a Word of Knowledge." 

Price: $5.95
Fulfill Your Financial Destiny

Fulfill Your Financial Destiny

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 66 Pages

Though the economic system (mammon) of this world is under a curse, we have received instructions for how to move out from that dominion and into the blessing of the Kingdom of God. God’s promises to His children have not changed with the whims of government or Wall Street, nor have His directions for how to walk in those promises. We can “choose not to participate” in the economic recession that is around us if we instead choose to obey the logos and rhema of the Lord and enjoy the blessings that result.

Price: $12.95
Gifted to Succeed

Gifted to Succeed

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 189 Pages

There is no joy so complete as knowing who you are -- who God has made you to be and what your basic giftings and drives are. The goal of this book is to get you effectively functioning in roles which allow you to adequately express your heart motivations and gifts. The fulfillment you experience when you function in your gifts and calling is a joy almost beyond belief.

"Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before obscure men." (Prov. 22:29)

Price: $12.95
God's Heart for You

God's Heart for You

a devotional by Uta Milewski | 100 pages

Do you sometimes struggle with thoughts and feelings that you don't measure up? I do and I sometimes need a second opinion and a different perspective. In 2006, during an intense season of first doubt and then searching, God gave me His opinion, His heart for me. It set in motion the victories and freedom I now experience in life. I pray you'll be encouraged by the Scriptures and thoughts God gave me during that time.

Price: $5.95