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My #1 secret of success

I’ve been successful in building some things and people have speculated on the reason why.   In the interest of trying to impart to you something that will be useful, I’ll dispense with the false humility that is customary when discussing such matters. Of course God is the author of all i…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
I’ve been successful in building some things and people have speculated on the reason why.
 
In the interest of trying to impart to you something that will be useful, I’ll dispense with the false humility that is customary when discussing such matters. Of course God is the author of all ideas and opportunities. But I’m not a Calvinist or a determinist. We are stewards of what he gives us and he holds us accountable for our stewardship.
 
So, what is it? Some hypotheses:
  • Maybe it’s a commitment to prayer and to try to follow God’s leadership.
  • Maybe it flows from trying to follow Jesus’ model of discipleship.
  • Maybe it’s a willingness to take wild risks and lots of them.
  • Maybe it’s an ability to build large networks.
  • Or maybe it’s my commitment to build a nurturing culture in the workplace.
  • Or maybe it’s the fact that my parents taught me to wait before I eat the marshmallow.
 
Frankly, I don’t know – they’re all important. But let’s look at this last one. Perhaps the Galatians 5:22 fruit of the Spirit that seems most missing  in young people today is self-control. Like the kids in the video below, we  want to eat the marshmallow now.  And as the accompanying study shows, 100% of kids who master this issue of self-discipline are successful later in life.
 
Unfortunately, for whatever reason, parents seem to really struggle in helping their children learn to delay gratification. “If it’s good, get it now,” seems to be the mantra. Get in debt, buy it, and enjoy it. My parents fought this pernicious philosophy tooth and nail. We kids had no choice in the matter – we learned discipline in the Barnes home.
 
How would you rate yourself? It’s not too late to learn this principle. It’s all a question of making the decision to resist the temptation to indulge now so you can have something better later. Set a goal, get some accountability, and commit to grow in this area. And check out the video, it’s priceless.

Comments (5)

  • I think I halfway leaned this skill – I’m patiently impatient. I wait, but it doesn’t seem like I wait long enough. Thanks for the wisdom and the conviction

  • Well with my grown kids Lets say They ate the marshmallows and mommy bot them more. They are now in their 20s and We are working on delaying gratification and avoiding debt. It’s never to late!

    This second bunch doesn’t stand a chance. Mommy is wiser!

  • Hey friendthanks for this. It challenges me as always.

    Passionate pursuit of a God birthed vision is so key to everyone who claims to be a follower of Jesus. But it’s hard for many young people to feel inspired when the people around them (parents and others) fail to model a life of sacrifice and instead pursue comfort, ego strokes, fame and self aggrandizing behaviors. I know. I’ve been there. But no more.

    John the Baptist was beheaded. Paul was beheaded. Peter and Philip were crucified upside down. Bartholomex was flayed alive before he was crucified. James was killed by the sword. And John was probably boiled alive.

    Luke 9:23 is often skipped over in our speed reading devotionals.

    And we forget Jesus is after our chracter developmentnot our earthly comfort.

  • about 19 years ago my husband and myself took our 3 children ages 14, 12, and 4 at the time to visit a church outside our comfort zone. there was a visiting pastor there and he preached for perhaps 90 minutes and he preached over and over and over again “can you wait?” and over and over and over again he would say but can you wait, my kids at one point said ok ok yes we can wait.. we get it..!!(-: now is he done? (-: over the years we realized why he stated it over and over again because it was one of the most important lessons in our christianity we learned self control and it is one message we have never forgotten!! even at times over the years certain instances that our kids have found themselves in that sermon comes back to them..thanks for again reminding us Can we wait?

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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