RELIGION: Sharing the ‘40 Lessons in 40 Years’

It is my pleasure to welcome you, dear reader, to this brand new column.

As a Christian myself, I am so much excited as The Sunday Mail will take time to visit your churches and share your various activities of worship.

I hope through it we can share your church experiences to demonstrate the victorious journey that Christians across the country have embarked on.

And most importantly, this column is meant to reveal, through your experiences, the grace abounding in Jesus Christ to live a Victorious Life.

So watch out for The Sunday Mail at your church, we might be worshiping together next week.

Well, last week I found myself in New Life Covenant Church, Harare which is presided by Bishop Tudor and Pastor Chichi Bismark.

And what caught my attention on their service desk was a book authored by Bishop Bismark entitled Forty Lessons in Forty Years.

I was quite intrigued by the simple, yet profound 40 lessons.

Today, I will share with you only ten of those lessons extracted from Bishop Bismark’s book. Until next week, keep living a victorious life through our saviour and Lord Jesus Christ.

Lesson 1: Pray for Wisdom

At the age of 12, my mom led me to pray the prayers of Solomon which sought wisdom from God.

I learnt that the most important thing one could attain in life was wisdom. I had a traumatic and challenging school life that impaired my ability to develop academically.

This resulted in me repeating school grades twice in my early school years and a third time later in high school. The prayer for wisdom turned my life completely. I now pray for wisdom every day.

Lesson 4: Study

About 30 years ago, I heard someone say “learn something new every day.” Even though that may not be literally practical or possible, the principle of being a student at all times is definitely applicable. Develop a war chest of knowledge and information through study.

Lesson 6: Honour

Know whom to honour and how to honour those you honour. Not all people are equal in your life and therefore giving honour and showing honour must be understood as each person’s stature requires a corresponding measure of honour. Dishonour produces failure, drought, lack, famine, crop failure and reproduces itself in future generations.

Lesson 8: Ground rules for family; (Establishing, Developing and Maintaining)

Family is key to success. Every man and woman needs a place to go and someone to be with. We generally live for someone as opposed to live with someone. When you raise a family with your spouse, it is essential that you create by design a culture that establishes spirituality and success.

Lesson 15: Managing time guarantees you will have it in the future

Allocating time deliberately for specific legitimate functions guarantees results and good success. I learnt that when you arrange time for specific functions, duties and events, you achieve more.

Lesson 16: Maintain control of your faculties (emotions mind)

Staying in control of all one’s faculties is more important than we realise. Losing your mind or having an emotional breakdown can happen. But stay in control of all your faculties.

Lesson 21: Insist on excellence

Excellence pays off dividends in life that money can’t buy, neither can it compare to. Insisting on professionalism, benchmarking with a “not less than this standard” brings you to the forefront of life itself.

Lesson 25: Never take short-cuts

I’ve learnt that taking short-cuts generally costs more time, more money and more energy. When building your family, business or ministry, there is the constant temptation to take short-cuts, those opportunities present themselves openly.

Resist the temptation to take the short-cut. Allow the full thorough process to unfold and to be played out.

Lesson 26: Don’t trust everyone who makes claims

In life, you’ll meet a range of people who make claims and name drop. Many are opportunists. I call them “straw-asmatics” since they stick their straw in your well and in a dry season in your life, they withdraw their straw and look for someone else’s well using the same cheap tactics.

Lesson 31: Make sure you save money (a minimum of 15 percent of your income)

When Chichi and I got married in February 1982, we stumbled on life principles that framed our culture as a family and as a ministry. We had learnt of the Singapore model of saving, putting away a minimum of 23 percent of your income and creating a monetary reserve. We also purposed to live within our means and not to borrow money unnecessarily.

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