By: Robert J. Tamasy
當然，它們每一個都是成功的條件之一。但是其中有一個是比其他更加重要的，那就是－堅持。安麗的創辦人之一，同時也是奧蘭多魔術隊棒球協會的老闆李察．迪弗(Richard M. DeVos, Sr)提供了我們一些看法:
第一、堅持建造品格。「堅持」可以訓練我們的能力、鍛鍊我們的肌肉，「堅持」幫助我們面對挑戰和困難，使我們的品格和心裡的力量剛強起來。不但如此，「就是在患難中也是歡歡喜喜的；因為知道患難生忍耐， 忍耐生老練，老練生盼望； 盼望不至於羞恥，因為所賜給我們的聖靈將 神的愛澆灌在我們心裏。」(羅馬書5章3-5節)
第三、堅持強化目標。當我們專注在一個特定的目標時，一個清楚的使命感就會升起，它們會幫助我們無論如何都會堅持下去，如同李察．迪弗所說的，我們可以七十次被打倒，但是我們還是會在站起來。「弟兄們，我不是以為自己已經得著了；我只有一件事，就是忘記背後，努力面前的， 向著標竿直跑，要得 神在基督耶穌裏從上面召我來得的獎賞。」(腓立比書3章13-14節)
勞勃．泰默西是領袖資產協會的傳播部副部長，這是一個總部在美國喬治亞州亞特蘭大的非營利組織。他也是一個有40年經驗的退休新聞工作者。他寫過一本書「最佳狀態的商業：箴言給今日職場的歷久彌新智慧」（Business At Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today”s Workplace）。他也與David A. Stoddard合著一本書「導師之心」（The Heart of Mentoring）。要了解更多資訊, 可上網www.leaderslegacy.com 或上他的部落格www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com以及www.bobtamasy.wordpress.com 。
省思 / 討論題目
你是否同意李察．迪弗所說的，堅持是成功最重要的人格特質? 堅持是否曾經幫助你達成某個目標?決定堅持下去是否讓事情不一樣?解釋你的答案。 你是否同意「堅持建造品格」這一句話? 你是否同意堅持可以帶來其他事物無法帶來的喜樂?解釋一下你的答案。
THE PERVASIVE POWER OF PERSISTENCE
By Robert J. Tamasy
What would you consider the foremost requirement for success in the workplace? Would it be talent? Or education? Training? Good luck?
Certainly each of these can be a factor in professional success. But there is one other quality that might be more important than all of them – persistence. Richard M. DeVos, Sr., co-founder of the Amway Corporation and owner of the National Basketball Association”s Orlando Magic, offered this perspective:
“If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the field, I would pick the trait of persistence. Determination. The will to endure to the end, to get knocked down 70 times and get up off the floor saying, “Here comes number 71!””
DeVos seems to have a good point. If we think of top achievers in virtually any pursuit – government, business, technology, science, medicine, even sports and entertainment – we find most of them did not become “overnight successes,” but rather made their marks through hard work and a resolve never to accept failure as a final verdict. When we read the biographies of famous people, we usually discover they utilized adversity as motivation to keep trying, rather than as an excuse for quitting.
I have a friend who overcame great disadvantages in childhood and young adulthood to forge a very successful career as an entrepreneur and sales executive. Despite a limited education and a lack of training, he embarked on a rigorous self-improvement program, despite scoffers that insisted he was doomed to fail. Persistence, even in the face of setbacks, was his constant companion.
The Bible has much to say about persistence and its close cousin, perseverance. For instance:
Persistence builds character. Just as persistent exercise strengthens and tones muscles, persistence in the face of everyday challenges and obstacles builds character and inner strength. “…but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us…” (Romans 5:3-5).
Persistence provides joy. Staying the course, refusing to give up, and then reaping the fruits of hard work and determination, provides a sense of joy and fulfillment that cannot be achieved in any other way. “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:2-4).
Persistence reinforces purpose. When we focus on specific goals and an overriding, clearly defined mission, they help us to persevere despite discouragement and disappointment. As DeVos said, we can get knocked down 70 times and get up again. “Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).
Robert J. Tamasy is vice president of communications for Leaders Legacy, Inc., a non-profit organization based in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A. A veteran journalist, he has written Tufting Legacies (iUniverse); Business At Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today”s Workplace (River City Press); and has coauthored with David A. Stoddard, The Heart of Mentoring (NavPress). For more information, see www.leaderslegacy.com or his blogs, www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com and www.bobtamasy.wordpress.com.
What do you think of Richard DeVos”s statement that the quality or characteristic he believes correlates most directly to success is persistence? Think of a time when persistence played an important role in your quest to reach a certain goal or objective. What difference did it make to exert that kind of determination? How do you think persistence can build character? Do you agree with the statement that persistence can provide a sense of joy that cannot be experienced in any other way? Why or why not?
NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about this subject, consider the following passages:
Joshua 1:6-9; Proverbs 13:8, 24:30-34; Isaiah 26:3, 50:7; Ephesians 6:10-18