Thursday, 13 August 2015

Failings and Failures

So to redefine failure, it isn’t just about how little money you have stored up or even how little you earn. It isn’t how “small” your office is or how insignificant you think you are. Failure is when you live life aimlessly on the wrong path. Failure is also when you pursue a life goal either because someone else feels you should or when that is the direction society is headed. The failure is the teacher who is teaching only to earn a salary. The failure is the nurse who does it simply because she didn’t have any other thing to do. Also – and get ready for this one – the failure is the Local Government Chairman, State Governor or even President who is occupying that hallowed office only because he had the money to buy it or because “people said he should contest.”

Failing is an occurrence, a happening, an instance. Failing is external. It is a thing that happens to people when they get out of their comfort zones and try something different. Failing is a natural episode in the process which leads to expertise. A failure, on the other hand, is a person, a way of life, a life pattern. Being a failure is internal. It isn’t something that happens to a person but the person himself. A failure is a person who depressingly sits back in his pool of sorrow and feels he can never be anything better than he is at the moment. A failure is someone who has truncated the failing process by making it his destination.

So the question which naturally arises is whether you fail or are a failure. It was the Late Maya Angelou that said, “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” Believe me when I say to you that I know firsthand the pain and difficulty that comes from failing. Interestingly though, I will not sacrifice the fleeting peace of not trying to take away the excitement of trying something. I understand that it is only those who dare to fail that can ever achieve anything worthwhile.

Finally I’ll like you to consider the golden words of Winston S. Churchill: “Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”

A Discourse on Failings

I will like to begin with a question which will sound like a rhetoric one but of which in all intents and purposes I desire that it triggers a chain reaction of thoughts in your heart. Here it is: have you ever failed in your life? It is safe for the goal of this discuss for me to assume that the answer to this question is yes. I say this because I have personally had several bouts with failings and although with every bout I feel like a loner on a deserted island, I have witnessed the desire many have to break free from the bondage of failure and realized that I am not alone after all!

Funny as it may seem, not too long ago – precisely during my university years – I considered some people impregnable by the sharp claws of failings. I remember a colleague we tagged “Prof.” He was a brilliant chap and deservedly excelled with a First Class degree in Chemical Engineering. On one occasion he was asked if he had ever failed academically and he surprised most of us by stating emphatically that he has. He was asked to elaborate and he explained that he once set a goal to score an A grade in a course but got a C. That didn’t in any way sound like a failing to students like me who were oscillating between Cs and Ds.

Sometime later I understood what Prof meant when I heard the legendary Earl Nightingale define success as “The progressive realization of a worthy ideal.” This definition was revolutionary to my psyche because it meant two things:

·    The first is that success is a journey. This means you don’t become successful when you attain something or even a goal but you become a success the moment you begin a journey towards a predetermined end.

·       Second to that is success is predetermined. This means that the success isn’t just the person who attains a big office or becomes rich but the person who is doing intentionally what he or she decided to do. A success is hence the school teacher who is a school teacher because that is what he wants to be and do. The success is the nurse who chose that profession herself and is doing a great job at it. This also applies to every other field of human endeavor.

Monday, 13 July 2015

$86,400 daily...

Dear Readers, can you imagine waking up this morning and credited to your account is $86,400 USD. However you only have 24 hours to spend it.

Just like the biblical manna from heaven, this blessing works by the same principle. By the time you go back to bed, 12 midnight, whatever money you have not spent would be wiped out off your account. By 6 am the next morning, you will be credited with another $86,400 USD and at 12 midnight your account will again be emptied.

That is exactly the amount of wealth God gives to each and every one of us on a daily basis. God has made the provision for every man on earth to be equally endowed with this currency. So in actual fact every human being is equally wealthy according to God’s divine Providence.

The wealth I am referring to is, the wealth of TIME. It is the only wealth every human being comes to the earth with. We are all endowed with it equally. Everybody that is born on the surface of this earth, has this wealth. “Time is really the only capital that any human being has, and the only thing he can't afford to lose” - Thomas Edison

Ladies and gentlemen, this wealth is actually of more value than natural resources (petroleum, gold, diamond, gas etc.). It is the only wealth that is more valuable than human resources. The resource of time is the ultimate resource. Time is the ultimate wealth.

You may ask “How could time be more valuable than human resource? Oh yea! The reason is because a human resource is limited to the duration of his/ her lifespan, while time is unlimited.

“Being rich is having money; being wealthy is having time.” - Margaret Bonanno

Human resources could be purchased and sold, but not time. Once lost, time can never be regained. The value of time is only equal to the value of life. As a matter of fact life itself is measured by time. Time therefore is the measurement of life. Do you love life? Then don’t waste time!

NOTE: This article was written by Sunday Adelaja, founder and senior pastor of Embassy of God, an evangelical-charismatic megachurch in Kiev, Ukraine. It was published with permission of the author.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Find Your Passion and Pursue it

A great fire burns within me… - Vincent van Gogh (Dutch author)
When a person is passionately in love nothing holds him or her back. If you have been passionately in love with someone you’ll know what I mean. No obstacle is insurmountable. No expense in too high. No distance is too far. You can pay the price for your love because of one thing – passion.

Passion is to love what coal is to a steam locomotive. Passion is to a person what petrol is to a vehicle. Passion drives your engine. Passion moves you from point A to B. Passion gives you a chance to make a difference.

Without passion we are impotent. Without passion we stay in limbo. Without passion apathy guides our actions. You can be sure of one thing – your chance of success is proportional to passion level.

Now, in the same way that a person who is passionately in love with another can scarcely be restrained, a person who is passionate about his or her goals can scarce be restrained from accomplishing them. Success isn’t an option for the passionate person. It is an obligation. It doesn’t matter how many times you say to him or her that the set goal won’t be a reality because, for as long as he or she is concerned, it will be a reality.

I plead with you NOT to try chasing a dream you aren’t passionate about. That is one of the sure paths to failure and nonfulfillment. Instead, find your passion and pursue it!

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Dream Killers

When initially our hearts are encapsulated by dreams which excite we have a tendency of feeling nothing shall be impossible for us. This enthusiasm though wanes and there is always a tendency to kill the dream you gave birth to. In fact, it is my ernest opinion that nobody can kill your dream except with your consent. In effect, you are the only viable “ dream killer” in your life.

Three things in our lives exterminate our dreams. Paolo Coelho masterfully crafted the following words in his book, The Pilgrim, and I will love to share them with you. Over to Paolo: 

‘The first symptom of the process of our killing our dreams is the lack of time. The busiest people I have known in my life always have time enough to do everything. Those who do nothing are always tired and pay no attention to the little amount of work they are required to do. They complain constantly that the day is too short. The truth is, they are afraid to fight the good fight.

‘The second symptom of the death of our dreams lies in our certainties. Because we don’t want to see life as a grand adventure, we begin to think of ourselves as wise and fair and correct in asking so little of life. We look beyond the walls of our day-to-day existence, and we hear the sound of lances breaking, we smell the dust and the sweat, and we see the great defeats and the fire in the eyes of the warriors. But we never see the delight, the immense delight in the hearts of those who are engaged in the battle. For them, neither victory nor defeat is important; what’s important is only that they are fighting the good fight.

‘And, finally, the third symptom of the passing of our dreams is peace. Life becomes a Sunday afternoon; we ask for nothing grand, and we cease to demand anything more than we are willing to give. In that state, we think of ourselves as being mature; we put aside the fantasies of our youth, and we seek personal and professional achievement. We are surprised when people our age say that they still want this or that out of life. But really, deep in our hearts, we know that what has happened is that we have renounced the battle for our dreams – we have refused to fight the good fight.’

These three – time, certainties, peace – are dream killers we must all look out for.

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