In recent months I have been in on several conversations with the owners of overseas kingdom business start ups who were discouraged – who were ready to give up. It is not easy to know if they need encouragement, or if they need a key resource they currently lack, or if they legitimately need to ‘pivot’ and head in a new direction.
We all know that hurdles or stumbling stones along the way can be stepping stones to success. The discouraging obstacles we encounter can actually bring out innovation, resolve and creativity.
Marketing consultant Andrew Lock acknowledges that often life doesn’t go in the direction we wish it would, whether it be in our family life, personal ambitions, or business development. But we are not doomed; most people have failures along the way and success can be just around the corner. Lock reminds us of:
- Walt Disney who was fired by a newspaper editor because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” He went bankrupt several times before he built Disneyland. The proposed park was initially rejected by the city of Anaheim on the grounds it would only attract “riffraff”.
- Thomas Edison’s teachers said he was “too stupid to learn anything” and he was fired from his first two jobs for being “nonproductive”. Commenting on his more than 1,000 unsuccessful attempts to invent the light bulb he said he didn’t fail all those times because those were important steps to success.
- Albert Einstein did not speak until he was 4 years old and did not read until he was 7. His parents thought he was “subnormal” and a teacher described him as “mentally slow, unsociable and adrift in foolish dreams.” He was expelled from school.
- The Beatles were turned down by Decca Records with this evaluation, “We don’t like their sound. Guitar groups are on their way out.”
- Fred Astaire’s memo after his first screen test read, “Can’t act, Can’t sing. Slightly bald. Can dance a little.”
- Winston Churchill, when it seemed Hitler would overcome England, delivered his famous “Never give up” speech and included, “The pessimist sees the problems in every opportunity. Whereas the optimist sees the opportunity in every problem.”
- Bill Job at Meixia Company (Xiamen, China), told me that many times he wondered if he would ever make it as a Kingdom business. But now years later, the Wall Street Journal credits him as a “pioneer business spirit and innovative artist” and now there is a multi-million dollar business. Check out Bill’s story at: http://www.amoymagic.com/meixia/meixia.htm.
Imagine if these people and others like them had given up. They all had times of depression and despair, but they continued on.
God’s Holy Word reminds us that life is not always easy, but we can always turn to Him for strength, wisdom and guidance:
- For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)
- And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.(Galatians 6:9)
- As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. (II Thessalonians 3:13)
- We do not lose heart…inwardly we are being renewed day by day. (II Corinthians 4:1, 16)
Larry W. Sharp, Director of Training, IBEC Ventures