Self-discipline is the Route

Karate Man

He was in poverty. He could not continue formal education after secondary school. He struggled to survive. Help came along the way. A man bought Keke for him in order to make things less difficult for him. There are people who have operated Keke and through discipline advanced from there. But not this guy. The guy showed his colour.

Before the Keke was bought for him, he had only one girlfriend. He had not ‘hammered’ from the Keke business but the number of girlfriends started increasing. This was as a result of the little money he had started making. No do no do Baba Ijebu came calling. He became a regular. Three months later, he was back at his previous state – poverty. Something comes out of this story. If he could not manage that income that came from that small Keke business properly, he could not have managed a greater income. The manner in which he wasted the money he got regardless of the amount is the same way he would lavish a greater amount if it comes his way – except he becomes disciplined. It is in this way that he is the cause of his own lack of progress. His problem is self-discipline.

Self-discipline has proven to be an issue for individuals. It is something hard for many. One is not conscious of the fact that when one does not properly utilize a thousand naira, properly utilizing a million naira will be an issue. The opportunity for advancement may present itself just like in the case of the Keke man, without self-discipline, the opportunity will be wasted. In this part of the world, one hardly looks objectively at the cause of a setback; one is rather ready to believe that enemies are at work. This mentality does not make one accept responsibility.

I have observed that a lot of youths want to start from the top. They see those who have hammered and without considering the amount of work those people had and still put in, they just want to be as hammered. They see the artist in his musical video as a star and immediately want to be like him. What they do not see is that the artist works so hard that he is almost always in the studio. He works really hard that rather than go to bed, he falls asleep. The path to greatness requires hard work no matter the endeavour.

A developed character predisposes one for greatness. Those things which a lot of people consider unimportant actually matter – time management, loyalty, commitment, organization, strategic thinking, and others. These things are intangible but not having them is costly. One who has the habit of arriving late for appointment, for instance, may not be taken serious and may even lose a business opportunity. This is not something that can just be prayed away.

People can be too religious for their own good in this part of the world. Prayer is important but it does not divest us of the responsibility to work. The Son of God WORKED and PRAYED. Throngs of people came to listen to him including the sick who came for healing. He performed his good works and kept his alone time for prayer. A number of people do not have it that way. They pray hard and do little work particularly to develop themselves. Sometimes you find laziness in their attitude. Somehow they hide under God who seems to be an excuse for them not to work as hard as they should all because they pray to this God.

It is not just by working, many things lie outside your control. Neither is it only by praying, work is a noble thing for man. To work and pray is the great combination.

When it seems everything is not just working, pray and look inwards. What you need to advance is already within you – you have it. God expects us to make do with what we have and he blesses our effort. I believe that there is nothing that life hands to us that we do not already have the resources to conquer.

Before Jesus fed the five thousand, he asked what was available. Five loaves and two fish were grossly inadequate for the crowd. But Jesus took it, blessed it and they became too much for the crowd. We are not to go to God empty-handed. Bring something to him for him to bless. It can be the work in which you have used your time, talent, or treasure.

In the parable of the talents, the one given five talents worked with them and made five more. The one given two talents made two more. The one given one talent who did not use it but buried it was punished for that. Start working with what you already have and more will be given to you. It is just as if by working with what you have, you qualify yourself for more.

The youths are supposed to look up to the seniors. I think the youths are quite disappointed; they have been failed by many seniors. What can a senior whose life is laden with corruption teach the youths? How can he serve as a role model? We have heard about the lootings that took place in the last administration. If it is true that 55 people looted over one trillion naira in eight years, what hope do such people give the youths?

But I prefer being responsible. I believe we have the responsibility of leading ourselves. I believe that with focus, the right attitude, and hard work, God will not leave us orphans. God is not against us. He is so glorious that his blessings are not for himself but for his children. You are one of his children.

Commit yourself to self-discipline on your path to your dreams. You add prayer to that and your blessing will find you.

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