One of the most inspirational people I have never met in person was Fred Smith. He was known to have mentored many well-known people such as Zig Ziglar. Before he passed I was able to talk with Fred on several occasions, and I still receive a weekly email from his organization on his wisdom and experience. Here is part of a great message from Fred:
So many people settle for a lower, comfortable plateau than they could attain by maintaining a "tension forward" to a higher plateau. True achievement is not a straight line up, but in steps. It is a process of taking one step and then plateauing for assimilation followed by another step and a plateau. This continues through a productive life.
In the Christian life many of us settle for a lower level than we should. One of my favorite theologians, Ray Stedman, said when I asked him "what are you going to teach Sunday?" replied, "I am going to tell my people to stop praying for what they already have."
In business I have seen the sad case of very talented individuals' not being discovered until too late. Some motivational speakers tell their audiences, "It's never too late." The fact is - it can be too late. Young people should be encouraged to start as early as possible on this climb to higher levels. The principle of compound interest makes it wise to pay now and play later.
How would you define a productive life for yourself? Are you moving ahead or on a plateau? Do you keep praying for what you already have? Are you looking for talented people to help them develop more quickly? You might check Fred’s web site for thought provoking readings from time to time at http://www.breakfastwithfred.com