If you died today, what would be wrote about you by your family and friends in the newspaper.
This is an old practice people do to discover what they want to accomplish in life- and a very good one. Let’s make this a little harder than normal- because I can’t let you off easy by writing the usual “devoted father or mother, loving husband or wife…” No this is about you getting serious about your future and determining whether you’re on the right track to get there. Get critical with yourself.
So let’s look at a few common ones that I have created.
Hard worker all of his life until he died at the age of 61.
Went from job to job never really finding his true passion.
Ate a lot of fast food, read 2 books a decade and
loved being a hermit. He leaves behind 3 children
and $35,000 in debt.
She was a very stressed person through life. She took
every comment to heart and let it rule who she was.
Started to write a book once but let someone who
she knew was always negative destroy that dream.
Because of stress she slept everyday after work and
napped most of her weekends away. She leaves behind
an unpaid for house and a well used bed.
How do those make you feel? Blah…
We have people figures in our life that we raise up on a pinnacle of greatness and rate their status as being unachievable to us mortal beings. I am being dramatic, but if we actually stated our literal thoughts about these people it would be pretty close.
So what are your words about your life? Have you accomplished your dreams or settled for stability? Settling is an unsatisfying feeling. It’s the resolution that says “This is the best I can do.” I believe we quit striving for excellence in our life because our concepts of being successful are marred. They’re marred because of our culture of instant communication through the news, social media outlets, and the internet in general. Every day there is ‘new’ news. Some scientific breakthrough, some new trend, a new remarkable book, some new innovation, or some new discovery. There is always something new coming out- and we’re so busy reading about them that we sometimes don’t implement in our own life. We get overwhelmed by these daily announcements of huge successes, that we can easily get this concept that these ‘new’ things were developed between the last news broadcast and the one your watching.
We have to get up- NOW- and act. Plan then Do! We have to get away from trying to fit the mould everyone wants us in and bring out what we were born to do. Success is not instantaneous- and success is only a mile marker on the way to the next one. I love hearing about all of the ‘new’ breakthroughs, but I’m more concerned about the doing. The key is diligence.
There is great power in diligence. Diligent leaders convert the critics because eventually the critics realize they’re going to achieve results because they don’t give up. Now I know I sound contradictory to my It’s Time To Quit post- but that still applies. The secret to endurance is in the knowing- knowing whether something is dead, knowing whether this contributes to purpose. Purpose never changes- our methods or plans to fulfill purpose might change but vision is always consistent. So it’s important to know when to change tactics and when to dig your heels in and press onward.
I love stones out of a river brook- they are so smooth. I can’t just break the rock in two with my hand- it’s rock, it’s hard. But the constant moving of water across the rocks surface shapes it, carving away any edges of the rock because of a diligent flow of water. The same is true in caves- a rock under a stalagmite dripping water will leave an impression on that rock. So get rid of the mindset that you cannot create, design, invent, innovate, or deliver something great to the nations. You may not have the funds to get the best designer for your website, you may not have the connections to find the best graphic designer, you may not know how to even begin to bring out the potential that’s in your head- but the most important thing is to start! It’s not about the biggest “Grand Opening” to a project- it’s not even about the unveiling of the product. It’s about the work. The story that is untold behind every breakthrough and news flash is the years it took to develop. Today’s headlines were deep in development five years ago while other discoveries were being announced. Your work is never ending, it’s always in development, it’s always being innovated and you never retire from your work.
So… where are you in your work? What will you leave behind that impacted the earth? What great things did God put inside of you to bring out for the kingdom?
A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children…
What do your word’s say about you now? Now the more important question- What will they say?