Shortcuts to Success

“A bribe is like a magic stone in the eyes of the one who gives it; wherever he turns he prospers.”
Proverbs 17, verse 8

Everyone makes crucial decisions every single day. Often we take shortcuts – we cut corners, in order to get something done, even half-way, to get someone off of our back in regards to a particular project. Name it – we all find ways to justify shortcuts.

Is that wise, though? Is it even necessary? Whatever your task, employment, vocation, job, we all have some degree of pressure to get things done quickly. Do we not declare ourselves God, when we circumvent the natural, methodical progression of completed tasks, and instead simply jump to the end, blazing through initial steps of a project and doing so with not even a hint towards excellence or professionalism?

Is it because we fear lack of control? Have we not been tested and endured to the end and found our God steadfast & faithful?

Overseas, running a small business, we were often stalked with the specter of bribery. “The customs officials expect a bribe.” “You’ll never get your product through the border without a bribe.” “Come on, it’s just $20; that’s nothing to you. Isn’t that worth speeding up this process?”

“A bribe is like a magic stone in the eyes of the one who gives it; wherever he turns he prospers.”
Proverbs 17, verse 8

Granted, not many of us will ever be faced with the prospect of having to give a bribe. However, there is probably some ways some among us have cut corners, and got things done faster, or cheaper, or both, thinking they have a special ability or knowledge to do so.

To be clear, I love making things efficient; redundancy, ineptitude, and cumbersome requirements that exist for no known reason drive me crazy. We glorify God, and manifest His wisdom in our lives when we makes things better – truly better. Yet, when we try to cut corners, wielding a ‘magic stone’ of our own, God is not glorified. Money may have been saved, but someone will pay for it further down the road. Time may have saved, but it will cost someone else a tremendous number of hours undoing the damage you inflicted and implementing a genuine, long-lasting solution.

Affect change. Serve those up-front – those with a bigger, but often less visible burden. Yet, seek His plans, execute them with His wisdom and timing, and do it with excellence – long-lasting excellence that buttresses your organization for the future and positions you for even deeper impact.

Now, what do you think?

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