“Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,
and prosper for us the work of our hands—
O prosper the work of our hands!”

Psalm 90:17

THE CHINESE BAMBOO TREE

In Asia there is a bamboo tree that grows in a very surprising way. After planting its small seed, the tree takes five years to grow, before it springs forth through the soil. For five long years it spreads out its roots and creates the foundation for a surprisingly and remarkable quick growth spurt. During its sixth year the tree begins to emerge through the soil and grows to almost one hundred feet in six weeks! That’s ten to fifteen feet a week or almost two feet a day. The reason for this extraordinary growth is a well-established root system that has been burrowing in the ground for five long years. No short cuts, just five years of laying a good foundation.

“Success isn’t driven through wanting, but through working hard.”

In my work with clients I often see a reluctance to wait. I see people who want to be successful now. Success isn’t driven through wanting, but through working hard. Sure, there are stories of over-night success, but for most of us it requires a long period of making mistakes and learning what works. The key to success is laying a sustainable foundation.

“Successful people learn that failure is a lesson in how to be successful.”

For those that put in the time, they learn how to get better. Most of their time is fixing what didn’t work. A vast amount of time is spent with failing. Successful people learn that failure is a lesson in how to be successful. They learn the value of quality in all that they do.

“The successful common denominator for those that succeed was they never gave up.”

During the time of incubation in our careers or businesses we will be confronted with dismay and a need to work harder. Henry Ford failed five times before his business took off. Colonel Sanders didn’t become successful until the age of sixty-five. Abraham Lincoln lost most of his runs for political office. The successful common denominator for those that succeed was they never gave up. Successful people know to keep trying.

“Seldom will we know which root of our hard work is the one that springs forth our success.”

Around every corner there is the opportunity to try a little harder. There is a moment when we have to dig deeper. Seldom will we know which root of our hard work is the one that springs forth our success. Like the Bamboo tree it may take many years for us to be successful.

“Through God we receive insight and providential help.”

In today’s verse the Psalmist prays for the Lord to find favor with the work of his hands. Besides working hard to achieve our success, this simple prayer found in Psalm 90 brings God into our work. Through God we receive insight and providential help. A consistent and faithful relationship with God opens our eyes and teaches us how God wants us to succeed.

Never give up on our dreams. If they are honest and faithful dreams, there will be success. Like the Chinese Bamboo tree we have to create strong roots in our work and with God, to succeed. We will never know which extra effort caused our success, but we will know God helped us try harder.

Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman

Parting Thoughts
  • What is your dream?
  • What disappointments have you encountered achieving this dream?
  • What have you learned?
  • What are the next steps?

Photo by Mai Rodriguez

We love giving credit to budding photographers to help them gain more exposure.

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