I most recently attended my daughter’s graduation from college for her Bachelors of Science in Business Administration. The Spring Commencement was held at Campbell University in Buies Creek, NC. The guest speaker was Dr. Belle S. Wheelan, President of the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges. Dr. Wheelan delivered an excellent address and was right on target in how graduates should conduct themselves in society.
The following are the recommendations for a successful life:
1.Take care of your body. Eat healthily and exercise. Make prayer a part of your daily life.
2. Continue to ask questions. Learning is a lifelong process.
3. Learn to laugh!
4. Learn to pay yourself first. Put some of your income away for retirement and long-term savings.
5. Get something back. Time is much more valuable to invest in people’s lives as opposed to concentrating on making money all the time. Give to other organizations to help support worthy causes.
6. Be as kind to the janitor as you are to the President of a company.
7. Remember to remain civil and polite.
8. Be an active member of your community. Register to vote and exercise that right. Run for a position on the school board, county supervisor, city council, or representative of your state.
9. Don’t believe in your own PR. Give credit to those who helped you get to where you are. Understand that you never know who is watching. People are always looking at what you are doing! You never know who is watching you because they may be key to opening the next door for you to go through. Don’t be so egocentric that you miss out on opportunities.
10. Always believe that you can succeed and be successful! Use your energy to keep forging ahead.
(Credit: Dr. Belle S. Wheelan, May 13, 2017, Campbell University Commencement Exercises)
Here are a few additional suggestions. As a Christian Dad, I would suggest making some changes to Items One and Ten. As for Item One, put God first in your life. Pray every day about everything. Pray for your neighbors and pray for your enemies. Pray for your boss and the leaders whom you work for. As for Item Ten, give God the credit. It is only through God that you have been gifted with your talent. One of my favorite scriptures is Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” As a Believer in Jesus Christ, I give Him the praise for all that I have received. As many of you know, not only am I in ministry as a Marketplace Chaplain, but I am a successful entrepreneur. My successes come from the Lord and I give Him all the praise. I consider my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ as my CEO of my company. Always give God the credit as He will bless you!
I loved Item Nine. You never know who is watching you. Make sure in all your decisions, you live your life as a living sacrifice to Christ. Live a life of honor so that it will be pleasing to God. If you do, you will never go wrong. People are watching and many will not invite you to be a part of their organization if you are the type of person who will step on people and treat them harshly. Consider espousing love to everyone. Be kind!
This leads me to Item Six. Be kind to everyone, even the janitor. Once, I heard a story where a person was working as a janitor for a large corporation. People treated him very badly and did not give him the time of day. This man went to college in the evenings and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Accounting. This janitor left his organization and started working for another large company. It was a few years later where his company bought out the company he used to work for as a janitor. Now those executives that treated him badly were working for him because he was the CEO of the company that bought them out. How the tables were now turned and these arrogant executives were now working for the man they stepped on and did not give the time of day. The moral of this story is that you should treat everyone with kindness and love. Don’t think you are better than they are because they are the janitors. If you have the love of Christ in your heart, then you will have agape love for everyone.
Congratulations to all the new graduates. I will be praying for you and look forward to hearing of many successes to come. May God bless each of you! Remember, you never know who is watching!
Joseph T. Lee, Copyright © November 30, 2017, The Lantern & Shield Times, LLC.