Thursday, 3 January 2019

How To Guarantee Your Safety In The Purpose Driven Living: Character – PDL Insights (Part 19)


How To Guarantee Your Safety In The Purpose Driven Living: Character – PDL Insights (Part 19)



When wealth is lost, nothing is lost, when health is lost somethings is lost, when character is lost all is lost - Billy Graham

As we continue in our discussion on The Purpose Driven Life (PDL) we need to remember what we have understood it to be. It is the centre piece of a meaningful life. In one way or the other people are looking for meaning in life and they do it differently and look in different places, people, possessions and positions.  True meaning however is in God and his purposes for our lives. We have understood the PDL to be a life that allows you to express your inner values doing what you love to do and what you are good at while maximising on your creativity.

This life is designed and preserved through a process of deliberate actions. It doesn’t happen naturally by observing your surroundings as the environment has very few role models who model it. It is therefore necessary to know that the PDL is lived from within. Looking at how priceless the PDL is, it has to be discovered, developed, lived and protected. One interesting thing is that the protection of the PDL is something that is our personal responsibility. One key ingredient that is important in our journey is a positive character. It is what helps us stand the test of opposing and pulling down forces in getting to live our lives to the fullest and when we are walking in the PDL path it is what keeps us in the path.

Character has been limitedly understood to be the moral attributes that one possesses but it is more than morality. A better way that character has generally and commonly been defined is taking it as the complex of mental and ethical traits marking and often individualizing a person, group, or nation. It encompasses inner fortitude and mental strength combined with the moral and ethical values. One has once described the moral aspect of character as what we do when we think no one is watching. The words of one of the most respected life coaches Jim Rohn throw light to help us understand this thing called Character when he says,
“Character isn’t something you were born with and can’t change, like your fingerprints. It’s something you weren’t born with and must take responsibility in forming”.

Getting to the first side of our accepted definition of character as mental traits that we have further described as inner fortitude and strength, it is clear that we need this in the PDL walk. As we have discovered in previous chapters and insights, Purpose Driven Living is being realised by a smaller percentage of people. The majority of people are following the wind and going where everyone is going. They are following the path of least resistance. When one embarks on their purpose journey, the environment is generally not supporting and one needs to go against the tide. This takes some mental strengths that manifests in taking strong decisions on direction, staying on the path when quitting is what makes sense, picking yourself up when you fall along the way, admitting when you are wrong and just being there and sticking to it to the end. A lot is what you will be called to do on the PDL journey. It is character that helps us do this.

The other side of the coin carries what has been generally understood as character. It is the moral and ethical aspects. Our purposes are to people and we pursue them also working with people. Purpose encompasses influencing people to go in certain directions, receive certain things and do certain things. Our gifts, skills, talents and abilities are tools that we have to fulfil purposes with our convictions, desires and passions being the fuel. Our values act as the compass to direct us but our morals and ethics are what keeps us in the game. Our gifts can take us to the top but our character will keep us there. A leader’s gift is only as safe as the character that contains it posits the late Myles Munroe. The ethical and moral components of our character gives us a reputation. You can have all the skills, gifts, convictions and passion (your purpose) but find no one to serve because of your character. The late Kung Fu actor Bruce Lee captured this nicely saying, “Knowledge will give you power but Character respect.”

One of the currencies precious than money that keeps the PDL going, keeping the thrill in relationships, making industries tick, making organisations continue to produce indelible marks and unions and treaties standing is called trust. Trust is simply the ability to freely give and receive. Trust is built over time as our character deposits it in trust bank accounts in other people and people groups. The more we deposit through our character over time the more we can withdraw in due season. Untrustworthiness is a result of flawed characters and Miles Munroe commented about this saying, “One of the most serious of the societal disorders is untrustworthiness. Once you lose the trust of your family, your friends, or your colleagues, it is very difficult to win it back.” This is echoed in the words of Will Rodgers who reinforced the priceless value of character saying, “Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip”.


The currency of trust is sometimes captured in a word that captures a number of these virtues called integrity. Integrity is an ability to demonstrate a reputable character that comes from an ability to look at things and life in an integral way. It comes from understanding that the environment we live in is integrated so every small decision, thought or action affects some other things beyond the moment. Decisions, thoughts, attitude and actions have a ripple effect and it is integrity that helps us to be effective and make lasting differences or fruit that remains, according to the words of the Master and Lord Jesus Christ. Integrity is priceless because it protects us over time. John Maxwell in one of his Audio Teachings, ‘Becoming a person of Influence’ describes integrity as a virtue that values
a.     Character over personal gain
b.   People over things
c.   Service over power
d.   Principle over convenience
e.    Long view over immediate

You will not run out of examples from the bible, history, media spaces, society, families and institutions where lack of integrity killed potential, deferred hope and destroyed destinies. This shows us why this virtue will protect our lives and walk in the PDL. Character will protect us from the environment that is ready to pressure us to compromise and thereby derail us or weaken the impact of our influence. Character will also protect us from the internal forces of our lusts and cravings that can wreck our destinies. This wisest person in the ancient world describes the protective aspect of Integrity that everyone in the PDL needs saying,

The integrity of the upright shall preserve him (Prov. 11:3)

Having realised the priceless value of Character, how then is character developed so that we can take the responsibility to develop the kind of Character that will take us far in the PDL path. One word sums it up and it is not surprising that the concept came from God’s model man and man’s identifiable God, Jesus Christ. It is called discipleship.

When Jesus first talked to people as the inauguration of his work on the earth he said, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” As he was carrying on with the work he met two brothers and in line with his message of a better kingdom than they were in, he says to them, ‘follow me, and I will make you fishers of men’. This aspect of following was the secret. It is what you follow that makes you. He gave them a guarantee that following him would make them fishers of men. What He promised, being ‘fishers of men’ is not limited to the ability to fish men into the kingdom through evangelism but it also implies that what you become in following him makes you the perfect bait that man cannot resist. Following him gives you magnetic influence that cannot be overlooked in relationships, business, leadership or any facet that involve people.

He was introducing people to an important aspect of change, the concept is of discipleship. In John He gives a reason why following him was necessary, “My kingdom is not of this world ……” He did not mean that his kingdom was not relevant on the earth and hence not to be experienced on the earth. He meant that his kingdom was not based on the system of principles and values which made the unredeemed order of humanity, but was coming from another system with a different set of principles and values.

One would wonder why he came talking of another Kingdom which was so different to what they were used to. This is because he was born in a time of Roman rule, the Greek culture and the Jewish traditions and none of the three could really bring out what he had come to present. This is the reason why he would boldly say, “all those who came before me where thieves and robbers.” With him coming with something new, for anyone to understand the new doctrine and idea about life one had to repent, be humble and be willing to learn. This was the call to discipleship. Discipleship was not a way of building a religion but of changing the culture and raising a new generation of people who could influence the world in a different way.

The word disciple as Jesus used it is from the Greek Word 'Mathetes’, as used in the original manuscript that captured the concept literally implying a learner or one who follows someone’s teaching. The word is from the root word ‘Math’ where we get the word ‘Maths’ which indicates thought followed by endeavour. The development of character calls one to be a learner, following certain people, teachings, principles or disciplines. To be effective in learning it is important to understand that we have to engage thought in a very effective way. This idea of thought is what the greater part of religion is missing out. The way some people are taught in the church for example, seems to be an approach that discourages thinking. People follow in a gullible manner and most people are led into beliefs and practices that disempower them. This explains why many people are poor and blindly following religions and leaders who exploit them.

When one looks at life from a vantage point, they will see that 95% of the people are far from The Purpose Driven Life. One of the reasons why very few people live fruitful and exciting lives is the lack of the kind of character that is consistent with success. The world system has role models that lack the kind of character and discipline required for success. If one is in an environment that has only 5% of people on the Purpose Driven Path, there is limited exposure to role models to follow. The world role models that people see in the entertainment industry are usually the worst demonstration of flawed characters. Many fail on morality and ethics and worse still the mental strength and fortitude that is needed for success. This shows why without the deliberate discipleship from role models that follow the way of Christ, many people are destined to failure. One person who followed Christ to live The Purpose Driven Life showed us the way and the best system to disciple us saying,

"Be ye therefore imitators of God, as beloved children (or children of love)." What would we do if we imitated God: We would love "And walk in love, even as Christ also loved you, and gave himself up for you." [Ephesians 5:1-2]

If people are to develop a character that will position them for greater heights in the PDL walk it will require a following or learning that engages one’s mind - Discipleship. If one is to be an effective disciple who will follow Christ to be an efficient ‘fisher of men’, (bait to influence and win the hearts of people), they need some characteristics that are discussed in one of the leadership modules I have produced entitled ‘Empowerment for Leadership, Success and Excellence’. The characteristics needed for a good disciple are Desire, Trust, Diligence, Patience, Perseverance, Consistency, Resilience, Jealousy and Sacrifice.

The concept of discipleship is important in character development and has to be used in different arenas of life. Effective parenting is the one that takes this course of discipleship as instructed by the most successful King of the ancient world who said,

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. [Proverbs 22:6] KJV.

Successful churches, organisations and companies that have raised a different kind of people have used this concept and it can work for you. Take the tried and tested discipleship of Christ and be a disciple of Christ to develop the ideal character needed for a successful PDL walk. Without a good character you will not go far, as delicately captured in the words of Billy Graham who said,
When wealth is lost, nothing is lost, when health is lost somethings is lost, when character is lost all is lost.

Good Leaders are those who have followed well and no one is a success and achieves excellence unless they have been followers of people or disciplines – Coach Tarie: The Wisdom Garden (Volume 1)

The system of this world is designed to produce failures and the virtue to escape it is discipline- Coach Tarie: The Wisdom Garden (Volume 1)

Look for more insights on the PDL on www.coachtarie.com or request to be added on the PURPOSE DRIVEN LIVING (PDL) WhatsApp group. Inbox any of the following numbers. +263773301267, +263783573784, +263784456314, +263779924607

For personal coaching in PURPOSE DRIVEN LIVING PDL or anything related to

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on www.coachtarie.com| coachtarie@ gmail.com | facebook/twitter/linkedin @ Coach Tarie | +263773 301 267/ +263 772 106 415



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