Internationally recognized, respected leadership authority, and renowned author, Dr. Stephen Covey is no stranger to many in the business world. His #1 best seller, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” is rightfully recognized as the most influential business book of the Twentieth century with more than 20 million copies sold in 38 languages.
But even more influential, is this other book that I have, which is known to many as the Bible. I like the acrostic that someone came up with for the Bible, which is – Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth (B.I.B.L.E.). While Dr. Covey’s best seller may help us to be effective in our life, the Bible will undoubtedly help us to be Highly Effective Christians, as we follow and serve the Lord Jesus Christ.
Interestingly, there is a striking parallel (as you will see) between the 7 habits of Highly Effective People and what I believe should be the 7 habits of Highly Effective Christians. I thank God first for His inspiration and then thank Dr. Covey for his book on the 7 habits of highly effective people, which is the premise on which the next 7 articles are.
So fasten your seat belts and get ready to become a highly effective Christian. We start today with Habit #1.
Covey’s Habit #1 – Be Proactive
Christian Habit #1 - Reach out to others
While being proactive is the principle of personal choice, reaching out to others is the principle of personal command. This applies to us, not just in the area of our relationship with God, wherein we are commissioned (Matthew 28) to evangelize and be in the ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:20), reaching out to those who do not know Jesus as their Lord and Savior, but it also applies to us in the area of our relationships with fellow men/women. Jesus asks us to leave the offering at the altar and be first reconciled with our fellow brothers. In other words, Jesus was saying that we need to reach out to the brother (fellow human) whom we are not right with. In layman’s term, Jesus was saying, be proactive in getting right with God and getting right with man, before it is too late. (Matthew 5:23-26)
Point(s) to ponder:
- How are we doing in the habit of proactively reaching out to others as it relates to our relationship with God? Are we proselytizing and sharing the GOSPEL with others, reconciling man with God.
- How are we doing in the habit of proactively reaching out to others as it relates to our relationship with ‘man’? Is there someone that you just cannot forgive? Is there someone who has hurt you or your loved ones so much that the mere mention of their names make your blood boil? Is there someone you need to get right with? Remember, Jesus’ words, for your lives to be an acceptable offering to God, FIRST, reach out to those who have offended you, and get right with them FIRST, then come back and offer yourself to God.
This is not a principle of personal choice, but a principle of personal command. Reach out to others.
Matthew 5:23-26 (KJV)
23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.
25 Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.
26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.