Dont Just Survive Thrive
2Thank you. Thank you to all the brave and fearless men and woman who channelled and steered me towards a summit in my life, where by I had no other alternative but to hnally write this little book. Without all of you this would not have been possible. Many people come and go, very few stick. These were the ones who believed and supported me as a loyal friend, valiant conhdant, son and soldier of the Almighty Truth. It would be my greatest honour to mention them as a token of my sincere gratitude. There have been six very prominent families in my life. All of these families and people are praiseworthy beyond command, and deserves only but the highest measure of noble admiration. They are truly the ones that I will take to war with me. The Bloodline of: BERGThe Bloodline of: VENTER The Bloodline of: HUTCHINSONThe Bloodline of: HERHOLDT The Bloodline of: HOLM The Bloodline of: MALANThere were many inspirations behind this project, yet there was one man who helped me to achieve this goal. Without him and his wonderful team of expertise I would have never had the opportunity to turn a dream into a reality. This man is a visionary, a leader that speaks of dignity, truth and justice. He is a mentor, a boss, a friend and a true conhdant. Wouter Snyman, as well as the entire team of "Attooh, you have my eternal gratitude. Another angel by my side is his sister, Lizelle Marais. Zella, you are that part of me that I always neglect and never have time for. Without you my life would literally fall apart. You are the best Personal Assistant I have ever come across, and the world would be at a loss when you pass and leave for Heaven. Thank you!These are my heros: My gallant father Dr. Adv. Eugene Berg, my striking mother Pauli Marais Berg, my brother and loyal sidekick Nielen Berg, my gorgeous sister that lives in the States, Magrikie Berg, and my brothers Judd and Charles Berg. My second mom and dad: Anton and Dolla Venter, thank you for giving me the gift of loyalty. My Godfather Ron Hutchinson and son Ihan, my best friend in Heaven. Thank you Reinhardt Herholdt in Botswana. Without you the world wouldve tripped me over and over again. You are my force of strength and shoulder in battle. Thank you to the Malan family in Adelaide. You are a true source of strength and joy in my life. And last but not least Eric Holm, one day my friend, your legs will turn to iron gold and you shall walk the surface of heaven and earth in a fearless and courageous stride. I love you. I love all of you! God, you have taught me that I can only keep what I have by giving it away. This message is to Honour You, and I hope that when you think of me, You see the cross. It is Your meekness that I strive for. God, please heal Charles Holtzhauzen and Handri de Klerk. They need You more than I ever did. I love You, and let Your will reign supreme. And The strong Shall become tinder And his work a spark, and Both of them shall burn together With none to quench them. Isaiah 1-31The task ahead of you can never ever be greater than the POWER behind you.ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS3introductionOh what a wondrous joy and delight it is to know that we might reach maybe just a few with the con-tent of this little book, and give them hope!For years people have been asking me to write down my truth because they felt and trusted that I had a very precious and valuable gift to offer. I could never understand what gift they were referring to. It always boggled my mind. What does a recovering drug addict with a few years of sobriety and bit of act-ing experience know about life and how to truly help people? Little did I know what God had in store for me? Little did I know to what a glorious position of life He would have me obtain and conquer in order to do His glorious work? These are only a few pages of what is about to follow. It was quite a challenge to write down most of these things; it was of utmost importance to me that it would lead you closer to your God, and NOT closer to me. Ego-centralism is a very dangerous thing, especially for me. Over years of sobriety I have witnessed many things. The hrst part of the book deals with certain core elements and forces in life that I had to deal with as a young man in order to survive and will hopefully serve as a little inspiration to those who feel they want to give up hope. My struggles came from years and years of an active and destructive life of extreme drug abuse. The second part of the book I talk about daily principles that I apply and what I have learned about leadership in order for me to thrive; intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and hnancially. 4My Life - my gift - part oneLet me start of by talking a bit about the disease of addiction and how it has affected my life. It was a long and tough journey, but I would love to share the miracles and blessings of my life with you.Now, I believe that in life there is only one thing worst than arrogance and that is false humility. Gran-diosity is a clear indication of disaster about to happen. I refer to myself as a recovering addict be-cause there is no such thing in life as a recovered addict. One is always in a place of recovery. It can be arrested as everyone knows, however, putting the drugs down is only part of the solution. If you are a drunken horse thief and you take the alcohol away, you are still a horse thief; you might as well just drink again. Its our behaviour, our values, principles; our entire being that needs to undergo a complete paradigm shift. This, from what I have witnessed over the last decade, only comes with grace. Yet it is not the Grace that KEEPS us clean. We need to take responsibility and do the things we were taught in order to stay clean and sober. The drugs are just a symptom of the disease. The disease is a spiritual obsessive-compulsive disorder that affects all areas of our lives. Many other symptoms occur with all kinds of people from all over the world; gambling, sex addiction, food or sex, the disease stays exactly the same, only the manifestation of it differs. We judge ourselves by our intentions, but the world judges us by our actionsMy life has been the most insane journey ever, and yet, God has pulled me from the ashes and lifted me into a huge position of great responsibility. It is important for me to say this because that is what life to me is about, "I AM RESPONSIBLE -For my livelihood, my successes, my happiness, my family and friends, my destiny. The blame game doesnt work for me anymore. It has only left me with emptiness, broken hearts and feelings of self-pity and despondency. I am not someone who likes to attract unneces-sary attention. When I write something I do it because of purpose, truth and strategy. There is a reason why I disclose certain things or aspects of my life, and why I choose to with hold some of them. For the purpose of this book, I would love to tell you a little about my past, as someone who just didnt know any better but to cause trouble wherever he went.My past is important to mention, as God might not otherwise get the absolute and complete honour that He deserves as my saviour and King. It was God alone that valued my being and saved my butt from fatal death. Not once, not twice, but several times. I still often hnd myself in a place of unworthiness before God, and I ask Him why me? I mean just to give you an example; when I was in grade two my teacher told my mother that one day I was going to end up in jail. Well, it wasnt far from the truth. I spent countless nights in various institutions across the country trying to hgure out just how exactly I got there. The answer was simple: Arrogance, stubbornness, anger, resentment, jealousy, hate towards the world and my God.It has always been an uncomfortable subject to talk about, and understandably so; many people, espe-cially the ones closest to me would rather like to forget those terrible dark days simply because there was too much shame, guilt and hurt involved. I dont blame them. I truly hope, as I know they would, 5understand and support the purpose of this book though. The disclosing of certain facts serves only as catalyst for a higher purpose; I have to be faithful to my God, for that I do not apologize. Secondly, I can only keep what I have by giving it away. This gift, lets call it, My Life will perish and suffocate within me unless I share the fundamental nature of my disease, and my road to recovery. Not just my road towards sobriety, but also my road towards abundance and hnancial independence. I dont necessarily enjoy speaking about the there and then, I would much rather just focus on the here and now, and all my wonderful blessings, yet if I forget my past, I am bound to repeat it. This is a great truth in my case. I have suffered greatly from grandiosity and clean time arrogance in the past; there were stages in my sober life that I thought I was so spiritual I was going to vaporise. I kid you not! Yip, there were stages that I thought the Dali Lama could come and learn a few things from me. Crazy isnt it, but Im sure many people can relate to this one. Shortcomings and defects of character dont disappear over night. It took me years and years of surrendering, something I still do on a daily basis in order for me to gain freedom and a better understanding of myself. Humility, I realized; is accepting the good and the bad the way God created us, not being more than or less than, and to better ourselves with tiny little meas-ures each day. There is no point in beating ourselves up for screwing up. Self-forgiveness is probably the most self-loving act in the world, if not the greatest! I have never experienced Gods forgiveness without a prior act of self-forgiveness. Shame is a terrible and extremely destructive force. It robs us of all dignity and majesty. It took a long time for me to stop looking in the mirror listening and believing that same old tape recording telling me how useless and worthless I was. Screw that! I was sick and tired of being sick and tired of being myself, if that makes any sense. Im sure it does though. Today, when I glance towards my refection, I see nothing but a worthy being, someone creditable of Gods love. And that my dear friend is the nitty-gritty of what it means to experience true reconciliation in the presence of our Father. True freedom!One is too many and a thousand is never enough. Any addict will be able to relate to this. Total ab-stinence is the only way for someone that has the disease of addiction. People often praise me for the fact that I mightve been one of very few that survived the struggling clutch of heroine addiction. That mightve been the case, yet it was NOT of my own doing. ANYBODY can move towards sobriety! ANY addict if, and only IF they have the ability to be completely honest with themselves. Addiction revolves around one thing and one thing only; self centred fear. I struggled with drugs for several years, and ended up being a lying, selhsh, deceitful thug, shoving needles in my arms to make me feel that life werent really that bad. And yes, it all DOES start with something as innocent as a joint. My ignorance and unwillingness to listen, as well as an inherent force of a reckless rebellion, lead me down a never-ending spiral of drugs, gangs and almost anything that you can think of that didnt agree with the norm. The hurt and my path of ruthless destruction haunted the dreams of my parents and those closest to me. Every waking moment to them seemed like a recurring clich; a never-ending nightmare. I have never killed anyone, only because God probably knew if He didnt act quickly I would die with someone elses blood on my hngers. Thank God for God that is all I can say. Yes, I have been to many rehabs, it doesnt matter how many. It will serve no purpose in me telling you. I have been to mental institutions, government institutions, hospitals, churches, doctors, jail the list goes on and on. I have been beaten up, broken down and left for the rats in gutters by Nigerians and Police 6alike. I have cried many endless tears; have lost many good friends and comrades along the way, some to jail, and some to death. Eventually I reached a point of utter desperation. I was lucky, or should I say blessed; my family were there for me when I needed them. They never ever turned their back on me. They say blood is thicker than water; this is only half a truth. There were others there for me as well. Today I have three dads and three moms. Im eternally grateful for their absolute and steadfast belief inme as a son. I hope I have made them proud. Today, by the grace of God I have a total of eleven years of sobriety. I relapsed four years ago and destroyed myself for over a year. It was as if I never stopped using. It left me almost to the vultures. But as I say, it was of my own doing. These days I embrace life! People often think Im as crazy as they come. Good for them, good for me. Do I care; brother, if I cared I would be using drugs right now, get it? Some say they hnd me very complicated. Let me tell you, not complicated enough! The joy of living I really have, even under pressure and difhculty; that today is my drug. People are my drugs. I hnd them fascinating. I truly love speaking to everyone I meet. Those that know me can vouch for that. People often ask me how I stay clean. They think I have a strong will or something. Let me tell you it has nothing to do with will power. You cant stop diarrhea with will power; its as simple as that. Its all about surrendering your will to a God of your understanding. In my case its Jesus Christ. 7This is what I do when I retire at night; I constructively review my day. Was I resentful, selhsh, dis-honest or afraid? Do I owe an apology? Have I kept something to myself, which should be discussed with another person at once? Was I kind and loving to all? What could I have done better? Was I thinking of myself most of the time? Or was I thinking of what I could do for others, of what I could pack into the stream of life? But I must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid refection, for that would diminish my usefulness to others. After making my review I ask Gods forgiveness and inquire what cor-rective measures should be taken? On awakening I think about the twenty-four hours ahead. I consider my plans for the day. Before I begin, I ask God to direct my thinking, especially asking that it would be divorced from self-pity, dishonest self-seeking motives. Under these conditions I can employ my mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave me brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives. I had to ask myself why I shouldnt apply to my human problems this same readiness to change my point of view. I was having trouble with personal relationships. I couldnt control my emotional nature and I was a prey to misery and depression, I couldnt make a living. I had a feeling of uselessness and was hlled with fear, I was unhappy. I couldnt seem to be of real help to anyone or anything. When I saw others solve their problems by a simple reliance upon the Spirit of the Universe, I had to stop doubting the power of God. My ideas did not work, But the God idea did. I had to, like Bill Wilson says; fearlessly face the proposition that either God is everything or He is nothing. God either is, or He isnt. My choice was to be was that He IS! I hnally saw that faith in some kind of God was a part of my make-up, just as much as the feeling I have for a friend. Sometimes I had to search fearlessly, but He was there. He was as much a fact as I was. I found a great Reality deep down within me, my paramount revelation.I always ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision if I dont know which course to take. I try to relax and take it easy. The right answers usually come. What used to be the hunch or the occa-sional inspiration becomes a working part of the mind. Eventually I came to rely on it. I usually conclude this period of meditation with a prayer that Id be shown all through the day what my next step is to be, that Id be given whatever I need to take care of such problems. I ask especially for freedom from self-will, and am careful to make no request for myself only. I may ask for myself, however if others will be helped. I am careful never to pray for my own selhsh ends. I have wasted many years trying to do that and it just doesnt work.As I go through the day I pause, when agitated or doubtful, I ask for the right thought or action. I am constantly reminding myself that I am no longer running the show, humbly saying it to myself many times each day Thy will be done. I am then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. Therefor I become much more efhcient. I do not tire so easily, for I am not burning up energy foolishly as I did when I was trying to arrange life to suit myself. It works, it REALLY DOES! I let God discipline me in this simple way as I have just outlined. But this is dehnitely not all. There is ACTION and more ACTION.sense of purpose and belonging - part two8Faith without works is dead-Bill Wilson.Im currently acting in a certain daily television production. It astounds me to see how certain employ-ees that work with me treat some of the extras on set. They are not openly rude or anything, they just dont speak to them. But thats just the point; they wouldnt even greet them! That is something I will never ever understand about human beings. If only we can all realize how small and diminutive we truly are. Yet I have learned that in order for me to move forward and maintain my serenity, it is imperative that I keep MY side of the street spotless and dirt-free. Even if someone or something does me wrong, maliciously, it is my responsibility to take care of the parts that I played in it. We always have a certain amount of responsibility to take in ANY situation. Life is hard and tough and we are faced with many challenges every day; work, stress, relationships, love interests, the boss, and not to mention the copious amounts of drugs, porn, violence, human trafhcking and probably the worst and saddest of them all; poverty. Yet, I have seen hundreds of families set their feet in a path that really goes somewhere; have seen the most impossible domestic situation righted; feuds and bitterness of all sorts wiped out. I have seen men rise from ashes and resume a vital place in the lives of their families and communities. Business and professional men have regained their standing. There is scarcely any form of trouble and misery, which has not been overcome amongst many. HOPE: this is what we need to regain! But how do we add this and make it part of the lives of many who have nothing left to live for. It hlls me with tears and sadness to witness my fellow countrymen suffering a fate they didnt ask for. For years I kept it from the public that I was but a useless junkie wondering the back streets of empty cold cities looking for my next hx. Even though my career went very well and I became somewhat of a "celebrity in the eyes of some, I carried around the knowing that my hardships was self inficted, born out of a place of self centeredness and selhshness. Again, let me just emphasize and make it crystal clear: I CHOSE that dark place, NO ONE but ME was responsible for my black dogs devouring my fate. Tears of absolute gratitude and joy run down my cheeks while whispering to my God: Why did you save me? Why me, and not so many countless others that struggle with so many things they never asked for.An ex girlfriend and still very good friend of mine, suffers from hip cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, has a growth almost as big as a golf ball on her ovaries, had her twenty sixth lumber punch the other day, and suffers from up to sometimes ten epileptic hts a week. And still, she is the most amazing and beautiful person, with a spirit of a lion and a heart of a bear, and she almost NEVER complains. Sure, she enquires and cries to her God, but she will always hnd it in her heart to put others hrst. So, this leaves me with only one conclusion: We have a lot of work ahead of us if we are to be branded men of honour and true dignity. A life revolving around Hykie Berg is as pointless as winning a million bucks, unless this life understands that its sole purpose is to serve and protect. God told Adam not just to do good, but to also protect the goodness in Paradise. We have to serve as soldiers for the truth, and protect it with our lives. Becoming a God-centred man is anyway a lot more exciting than staying a self-centred coward.9I never apologize to anyone for depending upon my Creator. I can laugh at those who think spirituality the way of weakness. Paradoxically, it is the way of strength. The verdict of the ages shows that faith means courage. All men of faith have courage. Think about Napoleon, William Wallace, Alexander the Great. They all trusted their God. I NEVER apologize for God. Instead I let him demonstrate, through me, what He can do. I ask him to remove my fear and direct my attention to what He would have me do. At once, I commence to outgrow fear. By the way, its this, and only this that imprisons and keeps us from following truth. You may ask me what this truth is, let me tell you: Its Absolute, and your most loyal sword. Only by initiating truth, will we experience and sustain sweet and everlasting victory. Victory that speaks of valour, honour and dignity.Injustice I understand, justice I dont. People dont believe the truth, only because it never hides itself. It is always BANG in your face. Evil is never what it appears to be, it is always something else, that is why most people plummet and collapse in the belief that they deserve second best. Now, God has proven, through me and countless others that He can, and will do for me, that which I cannot do for myself, if I let Him. I had to realize, that life does not happen on my terms, but on Gods terms. Yet I must keep my magic magnifying mind on my acceptance and off my expectations, for my serenity is directly pro-portional to my level of acceptance of people places and things. When I remember this, I can see Ive never had it so good. I am rated as a modestly successful man and only but by Grace, have excelled in what I do. Like most of you know, I have been relatively successful in my career in the arts. There are so many things I love doing apart from acting. God doesnt just bless us with one talent or a singular gift. He gives us plenty. It was my responsibility to empower and educate myself in the world of business and hnance. I always thought that a businessman is someone who sits in an ofhce doing mathematical calculations about the World Bank and the Stock Exchange. Surely these people exist as well and they probably make a very good living. Fortunately I hate numbers and admin so much I want to howl. But that is not what it is about. Being a businessman is nothing more than someone who understands healthy relationships and fair communication. The cooperate world and the world of the arts is one and the same thing. For genuine everlasting and sustainable success, one has to understand and grasp that the one feeds the other. They cannot exist separately. When one takes hold of this simple yet often complex dynamic, one realises the true poten-tial of what life really has to offer. You dont have to be the most intelligent person in the world to make money. You just need to know how to get in touch with them. Like a very good friend, mentor and busi-ness partner of mine always says: Outsource your weaknesses, you cant do everything yourself! It all boils down to healthy communication!My stock of material goods isnt that great. And when I say this, I dont mean that I dont live uncomfort-ably or dont have everything I want. It just means that I live within my boundaries. That which I know I need and want, and using my money wisely and responsibly. Always remember this: Real money you never see. People that always brag about how well they do and how many millions they are about to get, they are the ones you have to look out for. 10My father is, was and always will be one of South Africas greats. He has numerous PhDs in Law and has been working as an Advocate and businessman his whole life. I have never in my whole life heard him boast about his abilities or his wealth, because he understands the meaning of true abundance, and that my friend you cannot buy. It is a mindset, it is something so precious and valuable that exists only in the hearts of men. It has NOTHING to do with money. It has everything to do with principle and belief. He has taught me many great lessons, one of which is that the greatest fortune will come from follow-ing your true purpose. This means that I must hnd out what I love; that which truly makes me of happy doing. Have copious amounts of fun while doing it, and to do it as best as I possibly can. Not all busi-ness deals succeed. Many fail! The ones that fail is usually the ones that looks surprisingly effortless with great returns to make in a short period of time. To hnally discover ones true potential and core purpose is probably the single most overwhelming and awe-inspiring divine experience one could ever wish to have. Now, listen very carefully; there is no such thing as a quick buck. The magic word for sustainable suc-cess is called WORK. Work work,work!! True wealth comes in the realization that love conquers all, helping your fellow man by putting yourself in the hring line by working at it. People often say to me that its only because we are celebrities that we are so successful. Apparently people just throw things at us. That is true. Ive been thrown with a cucumber by an ignorant fan, a beer bottle, countless remarks that speaks of vindictiveness and cruelty, and last but not least, shallow woman with only one thing on their minds; hnding favour with celebrities and their friends by trying to jump in the sack with them. Allow me the honour to set things straight, and please excuse my language; bullshit!! Each and every one of us in the so-called lime light of South Africa has worked our butts off to be where we are today. Those that experience so-called popcorn fame usually dont last very long. And this is why: They are the ones feeling justihable of the masses fushing them with gifts and favours. They never studied, or worked their buts of towards a personal and steadfast goal. It was just given to them on a silver platter. For those, I do apologize, yet they give artists and the people truly deserving of their hard earned cash a bad name. His entire life my father has made his money by helping those who cannot help themselves. It was and will always be his passion to protect that, which confuses us so very often, called love for his fellow man. Yet he also taught me, that without money, love is out the back door. This is a valuable truth when one understands the context in which it is meant. My father always says; Money is not the most important thing in life, but it beats the thing that comes third, VERY far! What does this mean? Well simply put, Money buys the whiskey, and we all want it. This is true. We ALL want it, and need it. Yet if you chase it, it will elude you and decisions will be made based upon self centred fear and not unconditional love. Money is a very delicate, fragile, and beautiful thing to have, it is the utilizing of it that forms and creates what we call evil. There is absolutely nothing, and let me emphasize NOTHING wrong with wanting and working hard for a brand new Porsche 911. God didnt make it for you to shy away from it while someone else is driving off the showroom foor with a big fat grin on his face leaving you feel insecure or not good enough. No! You too can have it, if you truly want. It was made and designed also with a higher purpose in mind. We all know that so many people in life adds too much value to shiny bright cars, jewellery, big mansions, fashion etc, yet I say again there is absolutely nothing wrong with having these things IF, and only IF you grasp the fact that it is all on borrowed time, that God lend it to you for a purpose, and that what you are driving, even though its a 2 million rand piece of tin with four round things that takes you from place 11to place, does NOT dehne your existence in being. Believe me, a fashy sports car does NOT take away or hide your insecurities of not being good enough, it only makes you look like more of a fool. People are not stupid, so stop treating them like that. Its the ones closest to you that matters the most, right? Well they are the hrst ones that notice when you are trying to cover up. Be real, be authentic, THEN go and buy the Porsche. That way people will look up to you and you will be an inspiration to them. I always laugh at all these macho guys, trying to be so cool! They dont real-ize that they are the most afraid of them all. They are so afraid to just drop their faade, because they believe people wont accept them just for who they are; a spiritual being having a human experience, thats all, nothing more and nothing less. And this is truly sad, for we were not put on this earth to live for ourselves, but to enhance, explore and embrace other human potential. Someone once said that to see someone succeed and be truly happy for him is the noblest thing to do. I believe this. Its imperative to comprehend and understand that we have to do the right thing the right way, and not the right thing the wrong way.Now I have been truly blessed over the years with what I call our greatest resources here on earth, peo-ple. I have a fortune in friendships, family and most importantly, true conhdants and warriors next to me. These men and woman I will take to war with me. And we will die side by side hghting for honour, truth and justice! These principles have disappeared and have vanished in the homes of many men. I do have courage, because I have faith in my God. Self-assurance because that is what God expects from me, and honest appraisal for my own abilities. Above all, I have gained the greatest thing accorded to any man, the love and understanding of a gracious God, who have lifted me from a scrap heap to a position of trust where I have been able to reap the rich awards that come from showing a little love for others. I feel and consider myself a very useful and productive member of the human race. I have, at most times fashioned my best efforts to give back to humanity, and shall continue to contribute to humanity, since I am peculiarly qualihed in what I do; I love helping people to believe in hope. Believe in Themselves, their God and their Purpose. I get my greatest thrill of accomplishment from the knowledge that I have played a part in the creation of a new Happiness and Hope achieved by countless others. The fact that I work and earn my living is important, but secondary. I am humble enough to recognize and declare without any past shame or guilt that Im but a burning brilliance in what I do. I am adequately equipped to set free what I can earnestly guarantee. Yet it took me a lifetime to arrive at this point to say and believe this in a selfess and self-loving way.By harnessing the positive human qualities in me and in all of us, we can create a better future; and part of my commitment is to expand this human potential. I believe that positive change in society starts with individuals, hrst and for-most, with the "MAN IN THE MIRROR! Specihcally with individuals who are kind and wise delivered by high energy people with a wealth of expertise and a passionate way of communicating, so that once again we can set free the light of day within the hearts of men, and let it be good as a gift for another.There is ONE thing in life, ONE principle, ONE element, that shall jail and keep a man in everlasting ignorance, that thing, principle or element is called: contempt prior to investigation.- Bill Wilson12Lets talk about leaders quickly. I believe that we are all made up of certain qualities, and that a leader exists in every one of you, especially you! Let us take a quick look at probably one of the world greatest leaders that ever lived-Moses. He was dehnitely NOT a natural leader, as you all know. "Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth-Numbers 12:3. What words come to mind when you think of great leaders? Its doubtful that meek appears at the top of your list-yet that is the precise word God used to describe Moses. Moses had reasons to be humble. He certainly wasnt a natural leader. Nothing in the scripture indicates he attracted or led anyone during the hrst eighty years of his life. So far as we know, his hrst attempt at exerting his infuence to help the people resulted in the murder of an Egyptian and his fight from the country. The next forty years Moses spent in exile in the desert of Midian, a time so uneventful that scriptures sums it up in three versus (Exodus 2: 21-23)- Maxwell Leadership BibleYou dont have to be a natural to become a great leader; you simply need a heart for God and a teach-able spirit. Most of the great leaders in Scripture were made, not born. Happily for us, God is still making them today. Could you be one?Allow me to stress the importance of vision. All leaders have a vision, they know what they want and they know where they are going. Yet they understand the magnitude and value of a teachable and fol-lowing mind as well. More often and not, a true leader HAS to rely on the honest advice of his team. Without them, his course is doomed and will result in a dictatorship of some sort or another, and we all know where this road leads. Where there is no vision, the people perish- Proverbs 29:18. Have you ever been part of a team that didnt seem to make any progress? If you havent, well check again. Most of the groups that I have been part of, had plenty talents, resources and ample opportunities, and most of the team members got along, but the group just never went anywhere. The most obvious yet seemingly distant truth at the time was that the situation was caused by a lack of vision. Great vision precedes great achievement. Every team needs a compelling leader to give it direction. Are you just running away from danger, or are you running away from danger TOWARDS a place of safetyA team without vision is at worst, purposeless. At best, it is subject to the personal and sometimes self-ish agendas of various teammates. Always remember that the highest form of honesty is honesty of motive. Fifty years ago people still took others by their word and they shook on it like men. Today you CAN NOT afford to listen to what people say, ALWAYS try and hgure out WHY a person is saying what he says. Because WHO is that man! What does he stand for and is he REAL. Matthew 10:6 be as cunning as a snake and as true as a dove Without cunningness, the world will trip you and you will fall, hard! The world does not owe you anything, not a singular breath of fresh air, not even that. We give and receive out of GRACE. And believe me, it is a lot easier to give than to receive. A closed hand cant give, neither can it receive. Make sure that you have a few pennies in the bank before 13you start saving the world. You cant help someone if you cant help yourself hrst. We are not people pleasers. People pleasers do everything for everyone and they neglect themselves in the process. Up to a point where they resent the whole world for not returning the favour. Remember; a resentment is like drinking somebody else poison hoping they would die, NOT GONNA HAPPEN! YOU ARE DRINKING THE POISON, GUESS WHAT? Vision starts within. It draws on your history. It meets others needs and helps you gather resources. One of the most valuable benehts of vision is that it acts like a magnet attracting, challenging, and uniting people. The greater the vision, the more winners and leaders it has the potential to attract. The more challenging the vision, the harder the participants hght to achieve it.Author Ezra Earl Jones points out: Leaders do not have to be the greatest visionaries themselves. The vision may come from anyone. The leaders do have to state the vision, however. Leaders also have to keep the vision before the people and remind them of the progress that is being made to achieve the vision. Otherwise, the people might assume that they are failing and giving up. If you lead, then you are responsible for identifying a worthy and compelling vision and articulating it to your team members. The most valuable asset I believe a leader should have is the ability to recognize the leadership qualities in his team and his followers, and to help and assist them to start becoming lead-ers themselves. A leader that leads like a sheep is a damn sheep. He leads and all just follows. No, this is for wrong doing and ineffective leadership. One should lead like buffalo, in strength, all next to one another. And when the leader of the pack gets tired, he falls back so that his friend and brother in arms take over to protect the virtue of what they stand for. Not everyone can lead countries, people and wars, but have you ever though about leading a principle, hence, LEAD BY EXAMPLE. A company cannot grow without, until its leaders grow within. I often am amazed at the money, energy, and marketing that organizations focus on areas that will not promote growth. Let go of the old, embrace the new. Leaders have to grow positively towards change, and believe me, the world is changing at a rapid rate. Growth would then come automatically. The strength of any organization is a direct result of the strength of its leaders. Everything rises and falls on leadership. God is the Ultimate leader. This is the subject Isaiah spends time debating about. He lays out a list of traits for the kind of people who can stand up in a crisis. Ponder his description:INTEGRITY: The leaders life and words match. Say what you do, do what you say.JUSTICE: The leader rejects dishonest gain.CONVICTION: The leaders values wont allow briberyPOSITIVE FOCUS: The leader refuses to dwell on destructive issues.PURE: The leader disciplines his or her mind to remain clean and pure.SECURE: The leader is hrm, stable in his identity and source of strength.14I never ask WHY? It always points to the problem. I at all times ask H.O.W? It points towards the solution. Honesty - Rigorous honesty with yourself and others.Open-mindedness - Listen and take a variety of views in thought.Willingness - Rather risk than regret. Be willing to take that leap.The heart of leadership should be one of servant hood. This is not about position or skill. Its about at-titude. The truth is that the best leaders desire to serve others, not themselves. They put others ahead of their own agendas. They possess great conhdence to serve others because they do it out of love for their fellow man. They are not position-conscious and they always initiate service to others. It is never ever motivated by manipulation or self-promotion. In the end, the degree of your authority depends on the depth of your concern for others. We have to become willing and prepared to serve!All leaders have a few things to learn. But Naaman became furious, and went away and said, indeed, I said to myself, He will surely come out to me, and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and wave his hand over the place, and heal leprosy-2 Kings 5:11 -The Maxwell Leadership Bible Naaman had earned the love and respect of his king. Yet for all his strength and might, Naaman suffered from the dreaded disease of leprosy. When his king learned of a Hebrew prophet named Elisha who might be able to help, he sent Naaman off with great expectations. But rather than an impressive meeting with the prophet, Naaman received instruction by messenger to wash seven times in the Jordan River. This enraged Naaman and he angrily refused to follow the prescription. He struggled with pride, faulty expec-tations and infexibility-much like many leaders today. Yet as a strong leader, Naaman had surrounded himself with individuals who could speak up and disagree with him, and his inner circle provided good counsel. Naaman changed his mind, followed the prophets directives, and was healed. Leaders who re-main teachable receive on-going blessings. A great leader connects brilliantly with his audience. A master communicator begins with afhrmation. He bridges the subjects with the familiar by enlarging their vision of God. He uses inclusive language and gives encouragement and hope. He identihes with several of their own poets and he gives specihc steps of action. The number one skill which the leaders of any public or private company need is the ability to communicate clearly and memorably - to analysts, investors, customers, clients, media and employees; and to help leaders with executives excel in speaking, to any audience with conhdence and command! Why do I say that? Because there is Power in the Word, huge Power! It is very easy to sweep up a crowd and create vast expectation, its something completely different to do that and in the same time create Hope, a Living Hope that mobilizes ACTION!The fact that Im a qualihed Media Trainer and have been around in the entertainment and media indus-try for almost a decade is one thing, but to coach others and empower them with what I know, challenges my own willingness and hunger for personal and spiritual development. People are our biggest resources, yet very few realises this simple but central truth.15A Business Leaders greatest battle today is to win the trust of stakeholders. The leaders who win are those who communicate openly and often, have a clear and committed communication policy, formal and informal programs, and assess their own performance.The public often complain that leaders in politics spout out simplistic bromides and empty solutions to rectify their problems. That may be true, it might not. A leader who deals with the media or any audi-ence or different cultures have every reason to be fearful of trying to convey complex ideas through the media or their clients. The reality is its easy for complex ideas to be picked apart and then turned into objects of ridicule. I believe that managers and CEOs of large enterprises often have little idea how ubiquitous this problem is. Even if one feels his or her organization has no problem at all, it might pay to take another look down the line. You might make some interesting discoveries. One more day of delayed action is a day too late for our people... Our people are crying out for help. Let us respond while there is time. Festus Mogae16I spent a great deal of time passing on what I have learned to others who want it and need it badly. I do it for hve reasons: + A sense of purpose and belonging.+ It is a pleasure, yet I have my own livelihood to look after, and like all in life it is my trained profession and daily earnings. + Because in so doing I am paying my debt to the man who took time to pass it on to me.+ Because every time I do it I take out a little more insurance for myself that I am bound to learn from others.+ I am a genius in assisting those of who wants and needs my services. I under take in lighting the re of excellence within, I will always cherish my past and present circumstance, for it was my circumstances that forced me into the willingness to believe. Even though God has restored me to my right mind, and the revelation was sudden, I grew into Him slowly. But he has come to all who have honestly sought Him. When I drew near to Him, He disclosed Himself to me. My sense of purpose and belonging lies in the knowing that God loves us all unconditionally. It brings me the greatest of pleasure to help groups or individuals hnd their honest and true purpose. I have a team of experts that I work with daily to enhance, explore and improve all human potential. We assist those in their hnancial environment; we help people in the deliverance of their message, and guide them in be-coming the leader they were meant to be. I seize great delight in the fact that I can learn something from others on a daily basis that Im but a small man in a small world, with the immensity of prolihc success at the frame of my feet. The world is our second most valuable asset, treasure it and have the neces-sary respect for all who make use of it. Protect all goodness. Be noble and brave in your quest towards your providence, and brave in your valiant stride. March up against the darkness, love your friends and family, and defend your ancestry. Honour the tears of your past failures and deliver your best as we shall follow the golden hearts of many who have walked before us. Tears role down my cheeks, and my heart shakes as it resonates my gallant freedom. I yearn for the longing when the daybreak of dawn shall rise, and the people will witness as the ancient secret of God reveals itself; they will realize that their greatest conhdant and saviour has forever been their most loyal companion. Acting as a forceful whisper in the mark of a Cross, the eternal grace and shield that God has bestowed upon us shall become prominent in the eyes of our enemies, and they will fee before God like helpless pray. conclusion17If only I can emphasize my need to create the necessary awareness in men that ALL of us have the power to become GREAT. If only I had the power to thunderbolt the love of God in the hearts of seemingly lost and misplaced men. I pray that the misery of unfaithfulness, untruthfulness and betrayal be vanished in the homes of good but ostensibly lost men.There is always so much more to say. All people in life have at least one book to write. I challenge you to start writing your story, you might just change someones life.Always hang on to your God. Im a living testimony that God exists and that He loves me beyond any-thing I can ever imagine. God bless. DO!Come and DO!Thats what Leaders DO!Thats why they are called, Leaders!Because they DO the DO in THE DOING!