IN TIMES OF CHANGE, LEARNERS INHERIT THE EARTH, WHILE THE LEARNED FIND THEMSELVES BEAUTIFULLY EQUIPPED TO DEAL WITH A WORLD THAT NO LONGER EXISTS! – Eric Hoffer, a social thinker/writer of the twentieth century.
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It is said that when you see a turtle on a fence post, it sure had help getting there. That’s me! I’ve had help from God and from His people.
When I look at my life I see a picture of grace – favor unmerited both from God and man. I am a Christ – i.a.n! Without Christ, I Am Nothing! Outside of His precious grace I’m an empty shell devoid of any meaningful substance, but in Him I am complete; graced, empowered, and enabled to succeed. I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. I am also the workmanship of God in Christ Jesus. I am created unto good works which Christ has before ordained that I should walk therein. When you look at me and like what you see, don’t hate me or loathe me. It’s not my fault, it’s just my God!
I’m totally a picture of grace. Saved by grace. Justified by mercy. Enveloped by favor. Called unto glory. Positioned for success. That is who I am!
So, I sing with Sinach:
I’m walking in power
I walk in miracles
I live a life of favor
I know who I am!
Gone are those days when we thought that godliness had no earthly benefit. Those were the days when being born-again meant being the scum of the earth. Popular choruses were “Take the whole world and give me Jesus…” Believers were so heavenly conscious that they were of no earthly relevance. But those days are gone! Now we know better. We are godly and we are successful. And, our songs have changed. “Give me the whole world and give me Jesus…” seems more like what we sing nowadays. We are more easily to be charged with being earthly good but of not much eternal consequence! We have gone from one extreme end to the other.
Before you start thinking otherwise, I’m not advocating that poverty is synonymous with piety. One can be rich and righteous. Yet another can be poor and be sinful. If righteousness were equal to prosperity, then the most righteous men on earth would be the top dogs on the Forbes rich list. And thus the likes of Carlos Slim, William Henry Gates III, Folorunsho Alakija, Oprah Winfrey, Aliko Dangote etc., would be the most holy men and women on earth!
God does bless his people! You can be righteous and prosper! And you can be godly and broke too. Yeah! Remember the story Jesus told in Luke 16:19-31 about the rich man and Lazarus. That is sufficient an illustration.
An error has gone forth in the church: “If you do not have money, you must have missed God somewhere. Conversely, if you’re wealthy, then you must be in sync with God.” I say, no! You cannot worship God and mammon!
This is the whole counsel of God as revealed in 1Timothy 6:5-10:
“They think religion is a way to make a fast buck. A devout life does bring wealth, but it’s the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. Since we entered the world penniless and will leave it penniless, if we have bread on the table and shoes on our feet, that’s enough. But if it’s only money these leaders are after, they’ll self-destruct in no time. Lust for money brings trouble and nothing but trouble. Going down that path, some lose their footing in the faith completely and live to regret it bitterly ever after.”(Message)
Aren’t we guilty of “using” God to achieve our selfish ends? Are we not fast slipping into this error of equating godliness with gain? A heart search is pertinent here, before we slip so far away from the kingdom of God than when we were infidels. This is not to knock any valid truth of God’s word no matter how much it’s been bastardized but to restore believers back to the straight and narrow. Bottom line: Gain is not godliness. However, godliness is great gain. You will still hear me on this matter. YOU WILL SUCCEED!
Years ago as an undergraduate, I took a summer teaching job. Whenever I entered the classroom I always took a bow and greet the students as “ladies and gentlemen”. One of the students asked me why I did that one day. I answered her, “Because I see you not as what you are right now but as who you will be years down the line!”
“When I see people, everyone, every human, I understand that I am in the presence of greatness. Maybe potential greatness, or greatness unpolished, or greatness unfound, but every person has the ability.” (Kat Cole) I concur! Every human being carries the imprint of the Almighty.
This quote inspires what I’m sharing with you today, dear friend. Don’t just see people as they are; see them as they can be. So much more important for those of us who have a responsibility for others, whether as parents, bosses, pastors, teachers, heads of department, etc., in any leadership capacity. That is why I wrote the book That I Look Like A Beggar Does Not Say I Do Not Have A Throne! And it is why I volunteer to train and mentor under-privileged kids at Paradigm Initiative Nigeria’s Ajegunle.org project. It’s also why I’ve made it part of my life’s work to build a leadership center for youths where they can be trained and given an opportunity to discover and develop their innate potential for greatness.
Everyone you see is pregnant with destiny. Beneath every face is a precious person loved and valued by God. Respect that always. Never look down on anyone except you want to help them up. Look within your sphere of influence and do something to help someone today. You will succeed!
I read this story just recently and it touched me. It illustrates what I taught in my book, That I Look Like A Beggar Does Not Say I Do Not Have A Throne!
“Juan worked at a meat distribution factory. One day, when he finished with his work schedule, he went into the meat cold room to inspect something, but in a moment of bad luck, the door closed and he was locked inside with no help in sight!
Although he screamed and knocked with all his might, his cries went unheard as no one could hear him. Most of the workers had already gone, and outside the cold room it’s impossible to hear what was going on inside.
Five hours later, whilst Juan was on the verge of death, the security guard of the factory opened the door and saved the life of Juan. Juan then asked the security guard how he got to open the door, as it wasn’t part of his work routine, and he explained thus:
“I’ve been working in this factory for 35 years, hundreds of workers come in and out every day, but you’re one of the few who greets me in the morning and says goodbye to me every night when leaving after working hours. Many treat me as if I am invisible. Today, like every other day, you greeted me in your simple manner ‘Hello’ at the entrance when resuming for work. But curiously, after working hours today, I observed I’ve not heard your “Bye! See you tomorrow.” Hence I decided to check around the factory. Unknown to you, I look forward to your ‘Hi’ and ‘Bye’ every day. To you, I am someone. By not hearing your farewell, I knew something had happened. Then I sought and found you.”
One lesson from this story is this: Small kindnesses have big impact. A little kindness goes a very long way. Never look down on any man. The person you ignored today may be the one to save your life tomorrow.
Has this blessed you in any way? What other lessons can you draw from this? Please share. I’m waiting to hear it. YOU WILL SUCCEED!