In the quest to become successful and acquire wealth, many people resort to doing things that taint their integrity.
Consider this story:
In Africa many years ago, there lived a great King. This king ruled his kingdom with wisdom and might, but he had a problem. There was no child to succeed him when he dies. He had married many wives, but none of them could give him a male child.
He thought about it deeply and decided to choose a successor from the kingdom.
He told his town crier to make an announcement to all the villagers about his intention requesting that they present just one of their children to come the next day at the village square so he could make his selection.
The next day, the King's palace was filled to the brim with children from different homes in the community. The King handed each of them a particular seed and told them to go home, plant their seeds in a jar and nurse its growth for 8 months. Once the eight months were due, they should return to the palace and he would access how well they've done, then select the best as his heir.
There was a young boy from a poor home named named Ikeh who received his seed and returned to his village. When he got back, his mom helped him to find a vessel and put some soil into it. Ikeh made sure he watered his pot every day.
After each month, the children of the villagers who were given the seed would gather and compare their plants. All the seeds of the other kids have started sprouting and budding, but there was no sign of life in Ikeh's pot despite his efforts.
Ikeh was disappointed, but he kept watering his pot daily. A few months passed and now all the other children's pot really came to life. Some had short trees growing in them, some had beautiful flowers and some had leafy shrubs.
Poor Ikeh still had nothing growing in his pot and the other children started to make fun of him. They said he wasn't good enough and couldn't even grow a seed. They jeered at him and called him names. Ikeh was unhappy, but he never for one day failed to water his pot.
Soon, the eight months was over. It was time for the king to choose his heir. Ikeh didn't want to go. He felt there was no need and sat down crying. All the kids were going back with beautiful plants that are all grown, but look at his jar... Nothing.
"I have watered this plant everyday." "Why should I go to the palace?" "I have nothing to show for it." Ikeh said to his mother with sadness on his face. His looked at him in the eye and told him to return and show the King his barren vessel, no matter the consequences.
Ikeh reluctantly went to the palace where he met other children dressed in their best and carrying their well grown plants with so much pride. He found more reasons to be sad from what he saw.
The wise King came out of his palace and started to walk through the crowd, looking at the many beautiful trees, shrubs and flowers that were on display by the children. The boys all puffed their chests out and tried to look as royal as possible, hoping that they would be chosen as the successor to the throne.
Then the King came across Ikeh, who was bowing his head in shame. He looked at his pot then he looked at him closely. “What happened?” He asked.
“I watered the pot every day, but nothing ever grew.” Ikeh replied nervously.
Then the King smiled, nodded his head in admiration and moved on. After a few hours of reviewing other children's plants, the Emperor finally completed his assessment.
He stood in front of the children and congratulated them on their efforts.
“Clearly, some of you desperately want to be my heir and would do anything to make that happen, but there is one boy that I would like to point out as he has come to me with nothing. Ikeh, come here please.”
“Oh no,” thought Ikeh. There must be another boy with his name with a grown plant. But the King directed his servants to bring him up. He slowly sauntered to the front of the group, holding his barren pot.
The King held up the vessel for all to see and the other children laughed. Then the King continued, “Eight months ago, I gave you all a seed. I told you to go away, plant the seed and return with your plant. The seeds that I gave you all were burnt up with fire until they were no longer useful and wouldn’t grow, then they were coated to look like good seeds. Now, I see before me thousands of plants and only one barren pot."
Therefore, Ikeh is the successor to my throne.
Integrity is vital for success. Most people are ready to do anything to get successful, but few people actually get there. Why? Because those few people value their integrity. The people who are ready to do anything often make serious mistakes which mar their chances of success.
The fact that we want to become successful does not mean we should not have value, sound principles, good judgement and character. No!
Some businessmen are dishonest. They try to cheat you at your first business deal with them, but they often forget that you will not come back when you find out they've cheated you. And furthermore, you will spread the word which will tarnish the image of their business.
Wise businessmen understand that their business survives when you're happy and satisfied. And when you're happy you recommend their services to other people which grows their business.
Being successful at the expense of these things is impossible. Even if it appears to be, it doesn't last.
Integrity is a quality of the bold winner.
Until next time,
This story was culled from my blog: http://www.boldwinner.com/2016/07/a-story-about-integrity.html