You may recall as you were growing up there were people, companies, organisations and nations that were so promising and doing well that you thought were the last best thing.
You recall the first people in the clan to go to university, to buy a car, never mind that it was an Anglia, a black television set where the whole village or suburb would gather to watch Sounds on Saturday, Big Daddy on wrestling, Mvengemvenge or the Mukadota Family.
They sat on their laurels and have been deposed from the top through elimination by substitution by emerging ones. Some of these people and institutions are now major attractions at museums.
Some of these achievements have been wiped out by revolutions and the emergence of better and more sophisticated replacements. Your own success can block you from further success.
Your own success can hold you back from progressing if you rate your achievements against the rest of the world. If you are driving the best and living in the best neighbourhood, don’t think you have it all.
With the world now a global village and plurality having been introduced in many facets of human endeavour, don’t sleep in your lane. Do your best, keep exercising, study and research and develop better options.
There are individuals and companies that have makes and models to be released 10 years and more from now. Don’t sit on yesterday’s success thereby closing the door on who you really should be.
Paul kept on pushing, Philippians 3:13-14, “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before. I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
Yesterday’s success can be the reason for tomorrow’s failure.
In Zimbabwe there were supermarkets of choice in the last decade or so, but have now been eclipsed by an emerging brand. If they go back to the drawing board they will rise again if the dominant ones go to sleep.
This theory is true for any institution, political parties included. If you want to remain relevant, you have to be innovative and continue to offer cutting edge products and services.
Europe and America used to be global leaders, but we are now seeing the order changing with Asia taking a leading role. While the three are competing among themselves, Africa is emerging across the horizon.
Africa has everything to be the solution to global challenges, but has to follow Genesis 11:6, across political and ethnic divide from Cape to Cairo.
“And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do,”
Don’t let your little success overshadow you. The idea of comforting yourself that you have done better than someone else is retrogressive, a negation of growth.
You are far from the picture God has for you. We hear people looking down upon civil servants, teachers in particular, saying: “At least I am earning more than a teacher.”
Let me say to civil servants, God loves you, the nation cannot do without you, don’t be intimidated. Many of you are leading better lives than those that look down upon you. God will make a way.
People are just a crazy lot, they deride airtime and vegetable vendors, but we see men and women in suits driving expensive cars and living big, but borrowing airtime, cigarettes and a five rand bundle of vegetables from these vendors. So why do you say you are better?
Keep on surpassing your own record. If you are the best then keep breaking your own record. Over your shoulder there is someone competing with her/his purpose and you will be caught napping and overtaken at supersonic speed and Matthew 19:30 will haunt you: “But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.”
Let the words of William Shakespeare keep you alert: “All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players, They have their exits and their entrances.”
Finally convert your success to influence. Success is for starters, but mature people aim at influence. After amassing that wealth what is your contribution to the betterment of the human cause and what solution have you provided for the problems you found when you stepped on the scene?
Don’t just dream of owning every latest car, houses in every suburb and going out with every supermodel or every successful businessman in town. Be innovative and ask God for eyes that look generationally ahead. You are going somewhere.
All Scripture quotations are from the King James Version of the Bible.
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