Posts Tagged ‘Success’

WTBtower-of-babel2Some of you may have read the Old Testament before and remember the story of the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11). To help you recall, this story comes right after the epic saga of Noah in Biblical sequence. What I have always found to be sad in this story is how in so few years after the flood, where we saw God destroy everyone and every thing because of evil everywhere on the earth (Genesis 6:5)… that here we see once again, the people of the earth essentially following the same path. When will they learn?

God had already promised to not destroy the earth again (Genesis 8:21) but when He comes down and sees what the people are doing and saying, I can only imagine what He was thinking, something like, “here we go again”. Possibly? But I would like to give you another perspective on this issue that I heard shared recently that I found enlightening.

All my life I just took this story at face value; In other words, God came down, saw these people full of themselves to the point that they decided to build a tower to Heaven. In their minds, they were working every day on this project and as it grew taller and taller, they hoped they would somehow meet God in the air? From our vantage point now, that idea seems extremely crazy but let’s go with it for a minute; In the meantime, God comes down, sees what they are doing and instead of wiping them out…again…He confuses them by changing their languages. In other words, one minute you can communicate with the guy next to you and the next minute he is speaking French. Very quickly after that happened, the people collected together in their language groups and then went off and settled elsewhere leaving the tower project unfinished.

I would like to submit the idea to you that on that day, when God confused them with different languages, He saved them from sure destruction. Think of this scenario this way:

  • These people were doing what THEY wanted to do and NOT what God wanted them to do…
  • By pursuing what they wanted to do, they excluded God.
  • Because their pursuit was for their own glory and NOT Gods, this is a quick ticket to a very bad place.

Guys, I share this with you because I know it is easy to get sidetracked along the way in our lives. The pursuit of what we want to do is a very powerful thing and can or will overwhelm us to the point of complete exclusion from God. That is exactly what these people from the tower began to say:

Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” Genesis 11:4

I am telling you that God saved mankind that day by confusing them with different languages. They were on their way to sure destruction with the intent inside their hearts…

I am telling you the very same thing today. If your existence is to make a name for yourself at the exclusion of God, you too are on the wrong road and I caution you right now to recognize this and refocus back on Christ.

Let me leave you with this verse in Proverbs:

Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established. Proverbs 16:3

An easier way to look at this verse is simply this:

Commit your plans to God FIRST…and they will succeed…

 

Until next time Guys…

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Having been a Christian pretty much my entire life, I’ve had the luxury of being saturated with Sunday school stories about all of the famous Bible characters. Without a doubt however, my favorite one would be David because in my opinion, other than Christ himself, there really isn’t anyone in the Bible like him. He was the Bible biggest success and the biggest failure in one lifetime. He accomplished more as a young man than most men accomplish in a ten lifetimes. The reality is, how many of you have ever killed a Lion? That’s what I thought…none of us have, but yet as a teenager David killed both a lion and a bear all while trying to protect his flock of sheep.


But the biggest reason David’s story appeals to me most was how God referred to him…He was a man after his own heart (Acts 13:22). I look at that as David’s heart looked like, or reflected what God’s heart looked like. I like that. I have to ask the question…would God say the same thing about you or me? Probably not…

So then how did David achieve that kind of status with the Creator of the Universe? I have explored this subject somewhat and wanted to share with you what I think separated David from everyone else…

1. David served God from his youth. We don’t know much about David’s early years but we do know what he said when speaking to King Saul on the verge of his epic and very short battle with Goliath. In  1 Samuel 17:34,37  David says  “The Lord that delivered me from the paw of the Lion and the paw of the Bear is the same God who will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine”. There was never any doubt in his mind that he would enter that battle alone…God was with him.


2. David diligently sought God’s Face and counsel in a childlike dependence. Probably more than any other attribute, this childlike dependence upon God made him unique in the list of Bible characters. David sought Gods direction in all that he did…and he was diligent about it. He wasn’t too busy or that he might forget a day or two. Each day and throughout the day, he sought God.   See these verses:  1 Samuel 23: 2,4, 30:8, 2 Sam. 2:1, 5:19, 23


3. He worshiped God with his whole being and he directed Israel to do the same. David led by example and he expected Israel to follow. If you continue to read the Old Testament, one finds that after David died, the lack of worship and focus on God was the failure of the many Kings that came after him. These Kings did not lead by example nor did they have a relationship with God as he did.  (1 Chronicles 15-16)


4. He humbly recognized that God was the real King of Israel and that he was only God’s representative. Having read the Bible through,  I have found myself frustrated more than once as to how God’s people behaved in circumstances even though they were watching miracles after miracles happen right in front of them. On the other hand, David was humble from his youth and maintained that humility until later when he failed miserably. (2 Sam. 5:2).


5. In David’s public conduct, he largely obeyed the Lord and carried out his will. For the most part, David carried out the will of God. As we all know, he messed up later in life but David was still an amazing man.  (Acts 13:22)

There are many other reasons why God loved David as he did but the overwhelming reasons are humility and dependence.

As mentioned above, David sought God’s will for himself and Israel everyday. He never let up and God loved that about him. Finally, as I have blogged about many times, maintaining a humility before our Creator. David feared God and that holy fear kept him from harm and sin throughout most of his life.

I find myself admiring David for his unwavering relationship with God. When I look at the daily mayhem of this world and all of the busy-ness we all work in…having a childlike dependence on a God that never fails…brings me peace. I can’t say I understand the “whys” of God’s ways or why He does what He does, but His consistency and His grace are never failing…So my challenge is to you…be the guy who God refers to as a Man after His own heart…

So everyday when you wake up don’t forget to bring your sling and a small smooth stone…Goliath is out there, and I want you to be prepared…


Until next time guys…

A good friend of mine called me today hopping mad…well, maybe just frustrated but certainly not a happy guy. He was on his way to Los Angeles driving on a rainy Saturday morning to solve a problem that should never have been. You see, he is the man in charge of his project and he assigned someone to handle a job which in this case, was to cover up the roof of this unfinished building with plastic to thwart the coming rain. His employee performed the job similarly to how many people I have seen recently perform theirs…poorly…and as a result, the man in charge was forced to give up a Saturday of his life to solve the problem. Needless to say he was frustrated and he called me on his way up to the job site to vent. As the conversation progressed we started discussing leadership and how important it is to really anything that needs to be accomplished. From the football gridiron, to building anything, anytime there is a task that must be completed by a group it is the quality of the leadership that makes it happen. Now I’m the first to admit that leadership will only get you so far, you MUST have quality people in order to be successful. When you don’t have them, you end up doing what my friend is doing today…fixing someone else’s mistake and that affects everyone. Remember the old saying, ” you are only as strong as your weakest link”? I think we all know that statement to be true.

Recently I was watching my young son playing the game Madden NFL but he was doing it with a small twist. He turned off the games salary cap and was forcing trades thereby ending up with the very best players for his team. Now whenever he plays, he has an all-star team. He has Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady all on the same team? Can you imagine having the very best employees available all on your staff? For those of you who have worked in your industry for a long time, I’m sure you have worked with people you really enjoyed and there was a reason for that. Like me, if you were in charge, it’s because they knew their job and they cared about what they produced thereby causing you to admire their work ethic…or selfishly, because they made you look good…right?

Well the reality is we can’t have the very best people because they tend to get spread out amongst our competitors. Remember that part is all about the money. So what do you do to succeed with the group you have? You, You, You have to put forth quality leadership and get the most out of your people possible. Isn’t that what good coaching does? They put people in the right places in order for them to succeed thereby helping the company or team succeed. Don’t force that square peg into that round hole…you will regret that move…

But let’s get back to the beginning. My friend assigned a job to someone and that guy did that job poorly. This guy either has a good work ethic or he doesn’t. You can try to teach work ethic but I have found that to be difficult because many times it is how the person was raised that gives him his “approach to a problem” mentality. Unfortunately, in our world today, where we are struggling to stay in the black, companies just don’t have the time to spend on people who can’t simply step in and be productive. For me personally, I will give you one warning and then I must move on to the next person. That may sound harsh but my company’s success keeps many people employed and I will not allow a poor work ethic to spoil that success.

I will end with this. As a Christian, we are told in Colossians 3:17,

Let every detail in your lives-words, actions, whatever-be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way.

Simply put, not just in our words, but in our ACTIONS, which is our work ethic, we must commit all our efforts (especially work) to Christ and we, you, will be successful…So keep your head down until the job is finished and done right…

Until next time guys…

I found this article recently on MensHealth.com and I liked it a great deal. Anytime I can find information that has quality advice about growing up quality men, I will pass it on to you all. Yes, there will be a test at the end. It’s called life. Here’s how to make sure your kids ace it. Enjoy…

Words are Valuable

Speak up: Your kid is listening. In families with two working parents, fathers have a greater impact on their children’s language development by age 3 than mothers do, according to a study in the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology. Provide a creative, dramatic play-by-play of the activities you’re engaged in and your surroundings. Use big words, even if they’re unfamiliar to your kid. Children learn a lot by context.

Tantrums Earn You Nothing

“When your anxiety visibly rises, you add fuel to the fire,” says Hal Edward Runkel, a family therapist and the author of ScreamFree Parenting. And if you simply hand over a piece of candy, you encourage more bad behavior. Instead, when your kid starts shouting, be calm and attentive. Don’t ignore it. This signals that you will not be rattled and the child won’t win—ever. It may not work for the first tantrum, warns Runkel, but it’s magic by the fifth.

Competition Leads to Confidence

Children as young as 4 start to compete with their parents—sprinting to the car, wrestling on the sofa, stuff like that. Roll with it. Let them win a lot, and then slowly ramp it up so they have to work harder for their victories. “It’s a way for kids to develop a sense of strength and to let them test their muscles,” says Justin Richardson, M.D., who teaches psychiatry at Columbia University. They’ll start to walk more confidently and be less of a mark for bullies.

Quitting is Hard

When his son wanted to quit baseball at age 8, Runkel said to him, “Sure, but you have to tell your teammates and coach.” The boy couldn’t do it. He’s played for 7 years since. Show kids the pain of quitting, and they won’t make those kind of decisions lightly, Runkel says. “If your kid says a school project is too hard and that he wants to give up, that’s okay,” says Runkel. “But say, ‘Tell your teacher you’re quitting and that you’ll take whatever grade is appropriate.’ Trust me, he’ll stick it out.”

Other People’s Feelings Matter

It’s easier to connect with others if you understand their perspective, so nurture that instinct in your child. Start with the child’s own feelings. “Say, ‘Man, it must be hard being 8 years old. What’s the hardest part?’ ” suggests Runkel. Then mention people your kid knows who are having a hard time—say, a friend whose dad lost his job. Ask what he thinks it’s like for that friend. “They won’t always have an answer, but they’re thinking about it,” Runkel says.

Fights Can Be Resolved

Unless one kid is dangling the other out the window, don’t say a word. “As soon as you become involved, they no longer care about a solution. They’ll only try drafting you to their side,” says child psychologist Anthony Wolf, Ph.D., the author of Mom, Jason’s Breathing on Me! The Solution to Sibling Bickering. If they pester you, say your solution will be bad for both of them. They’ll learn that pleading is fruitless. More important, they’ll learn quickly to compromise.

Independence is Earned

When your kids ask to stay later at a friend’s house, ask what time would work for them. Then ask why. If you don’t hear a good answer, it’s okay to say no. If you do, try it, says Pennsylvania-based psychologist Janet Edgette, Psy.D. When parents give children freedom and responsibility, studies show, the children develop stronger morals more quickly.

Success Requires Focus

Maybe you don’t wish for a prodigy, but our competitive society suggests otherwise. That’s why so many kids have trouble focusing, says C. Andrew Ramsey, M.D., a psychiatry professor at Columbia University. Make sure your kids know your expectations. Celebrate improvement first. And explain the value of slow mastery. “Whether your kids love Tom Brady or Beyoncé, let them know that these people succeeded because they mastered one skill,” says Dr. Ramsey. “Learn to go through one door and many others will open for you; try to go through five doors at once and you’ll go nowhere.”

Until next time guys…