Destiny and Reading (I)
“If you spent thirty minutes a day studying any subject – vetinary medicine, for example – within ten years you’d have the equivalent of a PhD in that subject.”- Warren Wiesbe
Life is a journey! For you to arrive at the desired glorious destination, change is inevitable. If you must realize your destiny in life, you must be ready to make certain changes. In other words, you must be ready to be a new person by changing the way you think.
Apostle Paul, one of the greatest leaders in world history said: Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect (Rom. 12:1-2). And true to this assertion, Herbert Spencer said, “A living thing is distinguished from a dead thing by the multiplicity of the changes at any moment taking place in it.” So, change is an evidence of life. You will never grow if you abhor change because those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.
A lot of people expect a better life while they are still holding on to the status quo. This is not possible. That is why Albert Einstein said “For us to do things the way we have always done them and expect different results is one of the definitions of insanity.” So, you have an advantage of determining what your tomorrow will look like if you will do something about it today, because who you are today is the product of the actions you took yesterday. In other words, the best time to shape tomorrow is today when tomorrow is still a fluid in your imagination.
I believe it is possible to change your actions in the direction of the desired destiny you have dreamt of if only you will be conscious of certain factors. It is possible to be a leader of impact if you will be ready to do what great leaders have leant to do. What comes to your mind when you hear names like Paul the Apostle, Abraham Lincoln, Helen Keller, Ben Carson, Nelson Mandela, Rosa Parks, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Thomas Jefferson Bowen, Richard Branson, David Oyedepo, Thomas Edison and The Wright Brothers? These are world leaders who effected a decisive change in their nations and generations. Some of them are still alive. One thing is sure about all of them: they were all avid readers.
Mensal Utabi, one of the leading Gospel preachers in Ghana, and Chancellor of Ghana premier private University, in one of his presentations titled, “Transformed Destiny” outlined seven factors that make a man do whatever he does per time. You are not an exemption. The same factors are responsible for your actions as well. They are:
ENVIRONMENT: What others think and do.
KNOWLEDGE: What you know.
EXPERIENCE: What you go through
BELIEFS: What you accept as true
VALUES: What you treasure
CHOICES: What you see as right
ACTIONS: What you do
In other words, a man’s action is a function of the choice he has made. His choice is determined by his value system. His value system is a product of his beliefs which is usually shaped by his experience. His experience however is colored by his knowledge which is largely determined by his environment.
In this write-up, you are going to learn one of the proven strategies of changing your life positively as you propel yourself for excellence. It is actually the power of READING which I believe can produce a lasting CHANGE in you. Am going to focus on five areas which will form the fulcrum of reading: Why you need to Read; What you need to Read; When you need to Read; Where you need to Read; and Ways you need to Read. For this first part, I am going to concentrate on why you should develop a healthy habit of reading.
WHY YOU NEED TO READ
“Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant, and interesting” (Aldous Huxley)
“Your mind is a gift from God loaded with the ability to store unquantifiable information. However it remains dormant until it is stirred with the right materials in the right direction” (Ben Carson)
Although human being can learn in many ways, it has been proved that books are the best source for acquiring knowledge. Reading is a means of seeking knowledge, information or entertainment through the written word. This can be through books, journals, magazines and newspapers. Developing a reading culture has become very important for any society in the 21st Century.
Now, you must read because Jesus, the greatest leader of all time was a great reader when He was on earth (Luke 2:46; 4:17). He had read the entire law and the prophet before starting his public ministry. That is why he was such an impactful leader.
You must read because Books contain Fantastic ideas and ideas Rule the world. The more books you read, the more ideas you have in your brain and the more your relevance.
Reading is a way of exposing your mind to a higher thought. When you read, you are simply rubbing your mind with the mind of the author. Now, depending on the kind of book you read, you will simply reflect the spirit of the author.
Reading is a way of stirring up the gifts of God in you and exploring your talents. God has invested a lot in you but it remains dormant if not stired. Reading is like a rod that stirs God deposit of grace in you.
Reading is the cheapest means of overcoming Ignorance. There are a lot of secrets hidden in books. But when you don’t read books you can gain access to them and you remain in the state of ignorance. And ignorance is deadly.
Reading pushes you to use your imagination and makes you more creatively inclined. One of the best gift God has endowed human is his imaginative power. This becomes more effective as you deep it in the pool of knowledge through reading.
The books you read create an environment of enlightenment for you. Your eyes become more lighten as you read books and this places you in a unique environment.
Reading enhances your Memory Capacity and helps you to build your level of Confidence. When you read you become a man of knowledge and this enhances your level of confidence.
Reading helps you to get exposed to other places and cultures. You don’t literarily have to be in a place before you can talk about it. Reading takes you around the world while you are still in your sitting room.
If you can read and you don’t read, you are not better than an illiterate. Illiterate is not only somebody who does not go to school; but he who refuses to improve through learning.
Every Reader always turns out to be a Leader. There is no way you can be an impactful leader without engaging the tool of reading.
Let me end this section with this commendation about the reading lifestyle of John Wesley: “John Wesley had a passion for reading and most of it was done on horseback. He rode sometimes ninety and often fifty miles in a day. He read deeply on a wide range of subjects. It was his habit to travel with a volume of science or history or medicine propped on the pommel of his saddle, and in that way he got through thousands of volumes…He told the younger ministers of the Wesleyan societies either to read or get out of the ministry”
The Godly Brains