Rules For Success

In the process of discussing the workplace with my daughter, the observation was made that many young adults seem to have no idea what it means to do a job well. Why is this? Do we not have enough self-improvement books out there? Do people not care?.. or do they simply not know how to work? Did their parents not teach them?

Whatever the reason, there is an apparent void in this area of education. Therefore, here are some simple rules for success in any field. These rules are best learned as children, but can be learned later in life. Before we go to the rules, one overall absolute must be followed: SHOW UP! – – ON TIME! The one who always does this will be ahead of the pack.

Rules for Success LEVEL 1:

  • Do WHAT you are told. (No argument)
  • Do it WHEN you are told. (Not later)
  • Do it HOW you are told. (Don’t have a better idea)
  • Do your BEST. (Not just enough to get by)
  • Do it CHEERFULLY. (Without complaint)

Rules for Success LEVEL 2:

  • Do what needs to be done (without being told).
  • Do it promptly (without being told).
  • Do it right (without being told).
  • Do more than is expected of you.
  • Keep that smile.

Rules for Success LEVEL 3:

  • Accept responsibility for actions.
  • Admit when you’re wrong.
  • Be teachable and correctable.
  • Let your work be worship (do it to the glory of God), and always take a day of Sabbath rest. I said, “Let your work be worship,” not, “Worship your work.”

Now is that so hard? God will bless this kind of steady effort – no “luck” involved here. This is no easier for one than it is for another. When you get to levels 2 and 3, new doors open up to better jobs and entrepreneurship opportunities.

These rules for success are as old as the earth itself.  Parents have been teaching these simple tenets for generations. It is so sad that today’s designer children have such a push-button mentality. They are set up for failure and an entitled mentality.  Let’s take this simple wisdom off the shelf, dust it off, and give our kids this very excellent, ageless gift that will bless their lives.

For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.  Mat 20:28

Lesson Learned – I HOPE!

Publication1Have you ever noticed that things don’t always turn out the way you thought they would? Last Saturday I went to Charlotte to attend an informational summit (a different story), and had a great time right up until I stepped out in space and fell two steps, breaking my left upper arm. Now, for those who do not know, I am left-handed. In one careless misstep I became pretty badly impaired (at least for the time being.)

Some lovely new friends helped me to the first care, and as I proceeded to fill out papers with my right hand my new friend said, “Oh, you’re an independent one…”

That comment started me thinking, though. I am independent.  I grew up with the idea that if I can do it myself, I should, and I should not expect another to do it for me. I still think this is generally a good rule, but we all need to be willing to ask for help when we need it. We also need to admit that we can’t do everything.

Two weeks ago I painted the living room – by myself. Why? Because I insisted on it. I did not want to interfere with anyone else’s schedule. My husband tried to help in various ways, wherever I let him, but I knew he had a lot of things to do, so I didn’t let him do much. It took me all week, doing one wall a day. This 69 year old body ain’t what it used to be! My husband has been trying to gently correct this independent stubbornness in me for years, but he has been patient… and I have maintained my stance…

I do believe this issue becomes more obvious and pronounced as we age. It’s hard to accept that we may have limitations we did not have before. I am still in good health, (praise the Lord!) so my arm will heal and I will eventually be back in business. Hopefully, though, I will be more willing to humbly ask when I need someone to give a hand. At least I’ll have plenty of practice in the next few weeks!

Pride goes before destruction, and haughtiness before a fall. Proverbs 16:18 NLT    (OUCH!!)

Jesus is Coming Back – Yes, REALLY!

One of my earliest memories takes me back to the small dairy farm where I grew up. I was probably about four or five at the time. It was a sunny warm summer day, and I was trying to keep up with the long strides of my father as he went to the pasture to bring back the cows for evening milking. At that time in my life I followed him everywhere and pummeled him with questions constantly. He was pretty patient with me, but, as I remember it, he did frequently say, “Doreen, why don’t you go in the house and help your mother?” I would whine, “But I want to help YOU!”

This time, however, he did not try to shake me off. I was skipping about happily looking to the soft blue afternoon sky and asking, “When is Jesus coming back? What is it going to be like? I can’t wait! Is He coming soon?” These conversations were never rejected. He would talk to me about Jesus any time I wanted. He never turned me away. This was a precious time of a child’s desire to know Jesus, and a longsuffering daddy’s love. My Dad would smile and say, “I don’t know when, but I know it will be soon.” And he would describe to me what the Bible said about that wonderful day when loved ones would be raised from the dead and we would all go to meet Him together in the air. Doctrine was simple then. Just the facts: He is coming soon because He said He would.

Throughout my life, this theme has not been far from my core. I was brought up in a church that preached the Second Coming faithfully. My husband and I have ministered the truth of this Blessed Hope over the years. Now, about 65 years since that frolic in the grassy fields of Maine, we are proclaiming the truth of that promise now more than ever. My father didn’t live to see the occasion like he thought he would, but he will surely be there!  We are currently in a world of turmoil, wars, uprisings, riots, political intrigue, deception, and evil beyond comprehension. Sound familiar? Read Matthew 24. We are closer than ever. We need to be watching….

But I have this complaint against you. You don’t love me or each other as you did at first! Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. Revelation 2:4 and 5 NLT

I remember one morning when I was a teen sitting at the breakfast table. My Mom was telling us about a dream she had the night before. She dreamed that the sky rolled back like a scroll and Jesus appeared. She saw me running around, quite beside myself, as that five year old child, wearing a red plaid dress she had made me….

I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.” Luke 18:17 NLT

This convicts me. I can be so distracted by the cares and “shiny” things of this world. We all become “grown-ups”.

One of the beauties of getting older is remembering the value in the simple things. This, I believe, is the “wisdom of age”: becoming childlike in faith and love for our Heavenly Father and His Son, our Savior.

Come quickly, Lord Jesus….