A turtle decided to spend the winter in Florida. So he convinced two Canada geese to help him out. The geese each took one end of a rope, the turtle clamped his vise-like jaws in the center, and they lifted off. Someone on the ground yelled, “Wow! Who thought of that?” Fearing that the geese might take credit, the turtle yelled, “I did.”
Pride. Do you have some? I feel the lure of pride now and then. After all, what the world needs is more humble people. There are so few of us left.
Yet nothing destroys more relationships and causes more misery than selfishness. Those who dominate every discussion and talk incessantly about themselves should prepare to be lonely in the nursing home.
In Dale Carnegie’s classic How to Win Friends and Influence People he bases many of his points on biblical principles. Here are just four:
Become genuinely interested in others. “You can make more friends in two months by being interested in them,” says Carnegie, “than in two years by making them interested in you.”
Be a good listener. We must actually care about what people have to say. Many times people don’t want an entertaining conversation partner; they just want someone who will listen.
Talk in terms of the other person’s interest. The royal road to a person’s heart is to talk about the things he or she treasures most.
Make the other person feel important–and do it sincerely. Jesus said, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Those who manage this, will never be short on friends.
C.S. Lewis believed that humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less often. He said that if you meet a truly humble person, “All you will think about him is that he seemed a cheerful, intelligent chap who took a real interest in what you said to him.”
Paul wrote, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or empty pride, but in humility consider others more important than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Philippians 2:3-4). The world tells us to run after fame, cash and power. God tells us to walk humbly, to love, to serve.
And remember the words of Michel de Montaigne: “Even on the most exalted throne in the world we are only sitting on our own bottom.”
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