Every year many of us make what are called New Year’s resolutions. We decide to focus on doing some specific things or achieving some specific goal that may have not been fulfilled the previous year. While I normally do the same today, without getting into resolutions, I want to share with you four success keys for the new year. These are the four essentials that I believe are essential for life – no matter what the time or season is and what the objective is.
Everyone one has a philosophy (set of beliefs) and philosophy actually drives our behavior. If you have a racist philosophy you act in a racist manner. Our philosophy is often heavily influence by our environment and culture.
If you are born in India you are likely to adopt a Hindu philosophy. If you are born Arab you are likely to adopt a Muslim philosophy. If you are in The Bahamas you are likely to adopt a Christian philosophy. I am not here to tell you what you should believe and who you should believe in, but since your philosophy influences your behavior you should examine your current philosophical base and examine your behavior and determine if you are getting the best result. Your philosophy or belief system should be the thing that you spend most of your time on because everything else in your life is affected by it. The Bible puts it this way, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.”
My philosophy is what you would call a kingdom-based philosophy as outlined by Jesus. This includes principles like, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. “It is more blessed to give than to receive”. “Forgive others and you will be forgiven,” etc. This is the key to my success in life and therefore I believe that if you get your philosophy right you will behave accordingly.
Whatever Jesus exhibited I want to exhibit. He showed no racism. He served others before himself. He had compassion, and he showed love even to those who did not reciprocate. Bottom line is we should spend most of our time on this part of our lives, otherwise everything we do will be harmed if we live with a wrong philosophy. This is why Jesus said, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.”
ACQUISITION OF RESOURCES
We need resources to live. We need to be fed, clothed. Once you have the right philosophy it means that you will satisfy this part of life within the framework of your philosophy. You will spend time developing your skills, gifts, talents and abilities so that you can maximize them to help you acquire the resources you need to take care of yourself and your family. This is why we work, invest, start a business or enter a particular profession. We use our talents in exchange for resources we need to live a healthy and happy life. Work is one of the most common denominators in the human race. Even when we retire, we still pursue the acquisition of resources because we all need things to live. Whether it’s a house, car, food, clothes – we need resources to continually acquire. We must recognize that this is an important part of life, and our work, and business life should be driven by philosophy.
Sometimes this element is left out of the equation or given a low place of prominence. When Jesus said he came that our, joy may be full, it means we are supposed to enjoy life. Some people spend their lives acquiring resources and never get to enjoy them because they are fixated on acquiring more and more. Never underestimate the need for and power of enjoyment.
Vacations are important. Entertainment is important because when we work too much it affects our well-being. Stress is sometimes referred to as the source of most sicknesses. If you are not enjoying – chances are you are stressing – so make sure you engage in something you enjoy. Watching TV, going to the movies, playing basketball, reading a book, going to the beach, taking a vacation are all sources of enjoyment for many. It’s amazing what a vacation does for you.
My wife and I try to watch a movie every week just to relax and enjoy life. Sometimes I take walks for both enjoyment and exercise. It is good to breathe in fresh air rather than recirculated air. I take some headphones with me so I can listen to music while I walk. Enjoyment is as important as anything else in life.
If you have the right philosophy and you acquire the resources that you need for your life and you are enjoying your life, then you should share with others. This principle is ingrained in the philosophy of Jesus. He said, “…the Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve”.
Not only is giving a good thing but there is joy in giving. One of my greatest fulfillments in life is being able to help others experience what I have. I have been able to help young men from the streets become like me. I have helped them get into business and become law abiding productive citizens. I have helped others maximize their gifts and talents and utilize it for good. Some of our leaders in national and business affairs are young men and women that I played a role in helping to pursue their destiny. That is a good feeling and it is a feeling we should all experience. So, in 2022, remember these keys and I believe you will have not just success but good success.
• Pastor Dave Burrows is senior pastor at Bahamas Faith Ministries International. Feel free to email comments, whether you agree or disagree, to firstname.lastname@example.org. I appreciate your input and dialogue. We become better when we discuss, examine and exchange.