The turtle is actually doing just fine. He’s following his lot in life. He can hold his breath for a long time to dive, swim around and find food. But the image reminded me of times that I was in the position of that turtle. But, I’m not a turtle and I wasn’t doing just fine. Just like that turtle and the sparrows and every creation, we are under His watching eye. We are just where we’re supposed to be.
Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.
—Matthew 10:29 NASB
25“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? 27And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? 28And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ 32For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
—Matthew 6:25-34 NASB
Today I am going to share Zig Ziglar’s philosophy of BE — DO — HAVE. This came to mind since his son Tom received a suggestion from Gary Moyer. Gary suggested you need to add the word GIVE. Their representation tacks it on the end but I think it fits in at every point. The BE — DO — HAVE philosophy says if you BE the right kind of person DO the right things then you can HAVE all that life has to offer.
BE: to exist or live; to take place; happen; occur; to occupy a place or position. . . dictionary.com
Zig says, “BE the right kind of person” As I looked up the definition, I saw “let things be.” AHHHHHGH! That is not why you’re here or why I’m writing this stuff each week. BE is not talking about job titles or positions like when we ask kids “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I’ve quit using that phrase because I find it so bounding and restricting. Instead, I ask, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” This opens up their thinking as it does mine and sets me free from the bounds of a title or position. It sets the creative juices free. I’ll write more about doing in a few words.
How do you want your children to BE? Your boss? Your company? Now apply that to yourself. How do you want to be? Does that align with God’s plan for your life?
Stephen Covey wrote and spoke about having a principle centered life. What are your principles? The principles I’m talking about here are not very popular and are only found in the minority: integrity, honesty, discipline, hard work. I never get all my principles right nor consistent but I’m a work in progress. But principles seem much easier to apply and “BE” than trying to follow a set of rules. BE is the real me, what I default to when live hits the fan, how I am when I think no one is looking.
Are there areas in your life where you’re BE doesn’t line up with who you want to BE? If so, it is time to make a change and we can change alone, but why. I love that song that goes like this “God put a million, million doors in the world for His love to flow through. One of those doors is you.” When you recognize one of these areas of life you need to identify it specifically and make a commitment to yourself, your family, your community, and your Lord to change it. There’s no better way I’ve found than to take on that challenge in community through a friend, an accountability partner or a coach that you trust or a group like a Master Mind. Take advantage of those doors the Lord put in this world.
As we offer our struggles to others and invite them to come along side us, we grow closer to our “BE” while also blessing the other person or people we have brought into a closer and deeper relationship. So we can already give even as we work on our “BE”. Our “BE” is our foundation. The quality of that foundation will be reflected and magnified in our DO — HAVE, in our entire life.
DO: to perform; to execute; to accomplish, finish, complete; to put forth; exert; to be the cause of; to deal with, fix, clean, arrange, move; to render, give, pay dictionary.com
Zig says, “DO the right things.” The guiding light for what the “right things” are is my BE. Sometimes I need to look at the HAVE a bit ahead of the DO. HAVE is the outcome the results of what I do. The consequence of my BE and my DO. My BE has a big influence in the formation and revelation of my DO but my have is the road map or direction. Some times it is the bait at the end of a season of an undesirable DO. The desire for the HAVE fertilizes the attitude and determination for our DO.
There are so many things to do in this world with technology and information multiplying exponentially, with good people and good causes pulling us in many directions, and with our human desires and attraction for instant gratification. It’s no wonder I often feel like I’m getting nowhere. I can be so effective and get a bunch of things done on my checklist and when reviewing it say, “sure, I did all this stuff, but I didn’t get anywhere.” It has happened before and it will happen again that I find myself working and working and heads down focusing that I don’t realize I’m headed in the wrong direction. It has been said, you’ve worked so hard to climb that ladder only to get to the top and recognize that it is leaning on the wrong wall.
How am I getting free from that? I had to do a little math (just kidding):
YES = NO + NO + NO + NO + …
I used to be codependent. I used to be a yes man. I used to try to please everyone. OK, you caught me, I’m still some of those and probably always will be. I relish and devour your feedback and it drives me to write each week. To a point it is a good thing because the right character, integrity, and attitude can look a little codependent but it doesn’t have to be defined as a bad habit when it aligns with my BE and my HAVE.
Back to the math problem. Every time I say “YES” to something, I am saying “NO” to a bunch of other things. I need to be aware of what those things are in order to properly justify the “YES” is the “YES” lined up with my BE and my HAVE or is it just an interruption to experience some instant gratification? Or a distraction to please someone else? Or is that “YES” genuinely aligned with my HAVE, sending me where I REALLY want to go, driving me to my ultimate legacy.
When I don’t know what to do, I look at my HAVE wishlist. Then I look for people who already HAVE those things. I investigate their BE and what they DO. Then I become the great imitator and I’m on my way to doing the right things.
HAVE: to posses; own; hold for use; contain; to get; to receive; to take; to experience, undergo, endure… dictionary.com
This whole philosophy revolves around one thing. Knowing where you’re headed. Knowing your biggest why in life. Knowing what your ONE Thing is. Everyone’s HAVE is different and you need to be very clear about what you want to HAVE. If you don’t, you’ll be relegated to be in the place of “let things be”. You can be the action or the acted upon in your life it is completely up to you. Choosing not to choose is always a choice. In this question, that choice is being acted upon. It is wondering why life is the way it is. It is blaming others and the world around you for where you are.
So today, look at what you want to HAVE in life. Write it down. Share it with your family and friends (try to avoid those “glass half empty” people and stick with the half full or all full ones), people who believe in possibilities. You might even need your friends, your MasterMind group, or your coach to help you create this vision. Once you have the vision, it’s time for action.
RIGHT NOW: Take an inventory of where you are, what you HAVE now. Then look at what you DO. What are your habits? How have they served you? What principles or BE-ings do they demonstrate? What area, what one thing will make the biggest difference today, this week, this month, this year in achieving the HAVE you desire? Take this thing and set it as a series of W.A.Y. S.M.A.R.T. Goals to make a change in your life. Don’t do it alone. Share your challenge so that you have a person or team to celebrate your victory in life.