I was reading the successor of  Henry Sy, the Philippine’s richest man, who transferred the leadership of SM Investments Corp to Jose Sio. Mr. Sio shared these 5 rules to success and I want to put this into a Biblical context.

1. Accept that you and I are different persons because wherever you go, you do not have problems.

You can love a rose, but it takes a character to also accept that it includes thorns.

Madaling mahalin ang mga magagandang ugali ng iba, but to love others unconditionally is the best love you can give.

There was a story in one part of Australia who kept complaining about the big waves that wash their houses during the big storms. They keep praying to God not to make big waves and make them smaller waves. But God did not change the waves. People learn to surf and soon winning the Olympics in this sports category.

Success comes when you learn to accept what is unacceptable and maybe God wants to change your perspective rather than changing your circumstances. God is more interested in changing you rather than changing others.

  • Do you not like your spouse?
  • Do you hate your parents?
  • Are you angry about your boss?
  • Do you despise your friends?

Kaya nga pag nagpapakasal, sinasabi: “Do you love this person for good and bad, for better and for worse.” Wag kang magtaka na after ng wedding, lumalabas lahat ng worse! But the challenge is to accept our spouse as who he or she is. Acceptance is the key and work out our difference is the key to a better and long-lasting relationship.

In Hosea 1:2 When the LORD first began speaking to Israel through Hosea, he said to him, “Go and marry a prostitute, so that some of her children will be conceived in prostitution. This will illustrate how Israel has acted like a prostitute by turning against the LORD and worshiping other gods.”

But why God commanded the prophet Hosea to marry a whore, Gomer? In today’s culture, it may be unacceptable in our society to marry a prostitute but God ‘demanded’ it so Hosea has no choice but to obey. Moses was complaining and arguing with God in Exodus 4. But Hosea did not, he chose to follow God in marrying Gomer and had a child with her.

The life of Hosea and Gomer started to be good and happy. They were blessed with a son namely, Jezreel, the great grandfather of King Jeroboam. But after that, Gomer changed; her attitude changed and went back to love many other men. While Hosea was preaching: “Return to God”, (in Hosea 6:1) Gomer stayed away from home and maybe went back to living in immorality. As expected, Gomer conceived a child again which named Loruhamah, which means “unpitied” or “unloved,” because Hosea was convinced that the child is not his. Then again Gomer got pregnant again and it was another boy called, Lo-ammi, which meant “not my people,” or “no kin of mine.”

The Bible confirms that Hosea and Gomer did try many times to reconcile their differences but did not work. Until Gomer said: “I am living you now for good and I am not coming back.” Gomer went the man she truly loves and left Hosea and the family. But one day, Hosea heard that Gomer’s lovers left her and she became a slave and was there on a market auction. In Hosea 3:1, God told Hosea to love Gomer again, despite of immorality and unfaithfulness.

Hosea means salvation and Gomer completeness.

Love does not keep the record of wrong. [insert verse] For God so loved the world (despite our disobedience, immorality, unfaithfulness and sins) that He gave His only begotten Son to buy us back, to redeem us.

God accepts us and so are we to accept other despite differences in personality and opinion. By accepting others of who they are, you will succeed. If God accepts you as who you are, you better accept others as who they are, not what you wanted them to be.

If God accepts you as who you are, you better accept others as who they are, not what you wanted them to be.

2. In anything I do, I will give my best. 

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.  Colossians 3:23-24

Good is not enough. Always strive to beat your excellence yesterday of doing your best today.

Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper. –Proverbs 13:4

The difference between the first and second horse in a race course is sometimes by a nose. But the price and glory of the first price and the consolation price are substantial.

Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity – Titus 2:7 

Your work should be a testament to your hard work and signed by your commitment.

3. We should accept that life is a series of struggles. 

I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Do not expect that your life will be exempted from pains, hurts, rejection, death, and trials. Even Jesus said that we will have, not may have, but “will” have many, and I repeat, many, trials.

Maganda na yung handa sa mga problema. Maganda na may safety net.

  • If you lost your job, do you have savings to sustain you?
  • If you die, do you have insurance to pay for your bills and your funeral?
  • How do you manage life, when tragedy strikes?
  • If you retire, will any money still come in?
  • If you get sick, what will happen to your bills? to your remittance?

It is not what happens to us that matters, but what will be our response to what happens.

  • People may leave you, what is your response?
  • Sickness and death come unto you, what is your response?
  • Your spouse has left you, what is your response?

Will you move on? or will you remain bitter and angry?

4. I should be happy because happiness prolongs life.

God persuades us to seek happiness, joy, pleasure — whatever you want to call it — in him with verses like this: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4), and “in your presence is fullness of joy, and at your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11).

Jeremiah 31:13 says, “I will turn their mourning into gladness; / I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.”

James 1:2 says, “Consider it all joy, my brothers when you encounter various trials.” Christians can be happy, even in the midst of difficulties, because we know “the testing of our faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (verses 3–4). As we persevere through trials, with God’s help, our faith strengthens and matures. By God’s grace, we can be happy despite our circumstances.

“Those the LORD has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away” (Isaiah 35:10).

5. Love your God. A prayer is an act of faith.

To love God requires knowing Him, and that knowledge begins with His Word. It may sound cliche, but to know Him is to love Him.

The first commandment is to love God “with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30).

To love God is to love others (Mark 12:31) Meron ka bang kaaway or katampuhan? The Bible says you are a liar if you love God that you don’t see but hate the person you see?

To love God is to desire more of Him, to yearn for His righteousness, His Word, and His grace. “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God” (Psalm 42:1). Once we have tasted and seen that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8), we want more of Him. If we love God, we will be like Mary of Bethany, “who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said” (Luke 10:39).

Obedience is also a manifestation of our love to God. Jesus tells us, “If you love me you will obey what I command” (John 14:15, 23; 15:10; 1 John 5:3).  We naturally wish to please those we love. When we love God, we will want to please Him and obey His commands eagerly. “I delight to do your will” (Psalm 40:8).

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