Tuesday, 23 December 2014

(SURE-P) is a mere political gimmick- Chief Bayo Ogunmupe


(SURE-P) is a mere political gimmick- Chief Bayo Ogunmupe


ogunmupe 


YEMI OLAKITAN
Bayode Ogunmupe is a veteran journalist, economist and literary critic. He was Educated at the University of Ibadan; University of Geneva and the London School of Economics, UK; he holds degrees in History, Economics and Business. Ogunmupe has been Political Editor, Daily Sketch; Production Editor, Nigerian Tribune; Senior Sub Editor, Daily Times; Associate Editor, Newswatch and Economic columnist and literary critic for The Guardian. He was a recipient of the Nigerian Media Merit Awards in 1993 and the Ladi Lawal Journalist of the Year Award in 2010. He is the author of the international bestseller, Nigerian Politics in the age of Yar’Adua. Ogunmupe dismissed SURE-P as mere political campaign tool. Excerpts:
·         What is your opinion about SURE-P? There are reports that people are benefiting from it.
It is a mere political design, a gimmick. It is not true that people are benefiting from it. I have a personal experience with SURE-P. I applied for business loan and I was not given. They didn’t give it to me for any justification. My business was properly registered.  
It was like a small business. They were supposed to fund it.  The conditions were you should have a registered company, a business plan; both of which I had and I was not given the funding. I also tried applied for one of my sister in law who was unemployed at the time. She is a university graduate and it was the same experience.
I thought that may be, it was because of the women, men women gender disparity but the woman was not given also. She has a good education. She studied Accountancy so she could do something.  Why did Christopher Kolade who was former chairman of this committee resigned. It was because nothing tangible was happening there that could reach ordinary Nigerians.  
·         It was just propaganda?
It is just a propaganda stunt. They created it to score political points.  It is purely a Political propaganda and even a way to embezzle money that is why Dr. Kolade resigned as chairman so there is nothing in it. If it is good project why did Kolade resigned.
·         As an economist, do you think it would work if it was properly implemented?
It is a good way to stop unemployment and poverty. It is a good way, if it is properly run. it is the kind plan that was implement in the United States in 1948 after the second world war which bought up the European nations back to normalcy.
 If It will be done but it is going to be done by an agency independent of government such as INEC,  devoid of bureaucracy that goes on in civil service oriented organization or a bank.
Yes actually you can, through the SURE-P, give loans to Nigerians through the banks. They can give loans, without interest, collateral free. You can give any Nigerian that is qualified to do business. This will encourage entrepreneurship truly help to eradicate poverty.
 It could work but the people are not sincere. They could have created a plan that can encourage entrepreneurship, but the Nigeria factor is always there.  People are not ready to work sincerely for the development of the nation. They are ready to work it. The belief is that, what is in it for me, what can I steal?
What about the issue that led to the creation of SURE- P?
What led to it was this man, the former Central Bank Governor, Lamido Sanusi exposed subsidy as farce.  He exposed subsidy as a farce and that People were using subsidy to steal money from the Federal Government.  They discovered he was right so the government wanted to compensate the people for removing the subsidy so they establish SURE-P to compensate the people.
Was the removal of subsidy actually justified?
Yes, it was, Yes for me, economically, subsidy is always corruption. It is a way to steal money. The World Bank is against subsidy of any form because it is always a way for government to steal money so the best thing Jonathan has ever done was to privatize electricity.
If President Goodluck Jonathan wants to do something for Nigerians, It will be to create  bank products backed up by SURE-P which allows people, Nigerians to obtain loans without collateral, loans without interests and without discrimination.
There should only be three factors to qualify a person for the loan; anyone who is 21 years of age, anyone who is a Nigerian citizen, and is properly registered, once those factors are available, the person should be able to access a loan.  
This is what President Goodluck Jonathan needs to do. Get a banking product available to all Nigerians who are passionate about business and entrepreneurship. This would be supervised by the central bank of Nigeria.
Let the Federal Republic of Nigeria ensure that anybody who is a Nigerian citizen has access to it. All these SURE- P is a complete waste of money. Some people just want to embezzle money.
it appears as a good plan but the Nigeria factor is always there. Give loans to Nigerians who wants to do business. You can give between 1million to ten million particularly import substitution enterprise.
Can u buttress that point?
Import substitution enterprises involve all things Nigerian imports. You can now tell those companies Nigeria import from to service two or three Nigerian companies and to help them to be able to produce those things in Nigeria.  In the next 10 years you can now make it a law, if a company is not doing that you blacklist it. Make credit facility available for all Nigerians who want to participate in such a venture within three years poverty will be gone in this country.  This is all they need to do. President Jonathan is thinking about second term no sincerity. He is just doing this project for the sake of second term ambition. He wants to bribe the people deceived them so that they can vote for him

Infrastructutre as catalyst for Development , By Bayo Ogunmupe

IT was only last October that the President of the World Bank, Dr. Jim Yong Kim told the developing countries that there will be no economic growth without infrastructure. Speaking at the opening of the Annual Meeting of IMF and the World Bank in Washington DC, USA, Kim said economic growth is the most powerful tool needed to end poverty. Yet, without infrastructure – electricity, water and roads – growth will never take off. ‘‘Yes, I will explain, the world’s deficit of these building blocks of growth is substantial. Just think about the fact that sub-Saharan Africa generates as much as Spain, if we are to end poverty, we need to power Africa.”

  He said the World Bank group’s finance for infrastructure reached $24 billion in fiscal year 2014 nearly 40 per cent of our total commitments. But our loans and projects will fall far short of what the developing world needs. The infrastructure gap is simply enormous – an estimated $1 trillion to $1.5 trillion more is needed each year. To fill this gap, we need to tap into trillions of dollars held up by institutional investors, most of which is sitting on the sidelines. We then direct those assets into projects that will have great benefit for a range of developing countries.

  ‘‘Today, the developing world spends about one trillion dollars on infrastructure, and only a small share of those projects involves private actors. Overall, private investment and public-private partnerships in developing countries totalled $186 billion in 2012. So it will take the commitment of all of us to help low and middle income countries bridge the massive infrastructure divide,” Dr. Kim added.

  Accordingly, the World Bank has created the Global Infrastructure facility which is designed to attract financing for the infrastructural needs of developing countries. The platform, called FIF, will bring together institutional investors, development banks and public officials to tackle the infrastructure deficit in new and creative ways. Together, they will create a robust pipeline of infrastructure projects for poor and emerging markets.

  Thus, while building infrastructure will promote growth in the long run, ending poverty by 2030 also requires our being vigilant against threats to the growth of the global economy. In a world where natural disasters, conflict, financial crashes and epidemics are more rampart than ever before, the World Bank and the IMF become all the more indispensable. This means the Nigerian economy must be run in such a way as to be able to access growth facilities of the fund.

  Indeed, the World Bank has lately engaged in fighting two of the global threats to development: Ebola and climate change. These threats exemplify how the World Bank has become indispensable in solving development needs of developing countries, because nation states cannot fight Ebola and climate change all alone.

  Moreover, in the middle of our gross infrastructure deficit, the Ebola outbreak and climate change arise the security challenges ravaging our nation. Our economy is endangered by the continued spectre of insecurity with bombings in Northern Nigeria, kidnapping in the Niger Delta and the south in general. The error is with the Federal Government for not recognizing security as being essential to development. It is only when the Federal Government manages Nigeria’s resources to provide the wants and needs of the people that national security can be guaranteed.

  Poor management of our resources has exacerbated divisions along ethnic and religious lines with the active connivance of the people in power at the centre. Actively promoting religious and ethnic dissensions is subversive of national unity and security. These divisions along these cleavages are being promoted now than ever before. Since the return to civil rule in 1999, insecurity has emerged a most intractable challenge to peaceful governance. These challenges are increasing by the day. There have been Egbesu Boys in the Niger Delta, the Bakassi Boys in the South East, the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) in the South West, then the present Boko Haram in the North.

  At different times, these groups have held Nigeria to ransom with our security agencies being unable to deal with them. They have been emboldened by our incapacity to tackle them.

  In June 2013, nine students were killed in a school in Damaturu. In July of the same year, 29 students were killed in a school in Mamudo. The litany continues: September 2013, 40 were killed in Gujba; in February 2014, 29 killed in Buni Yadi, in April 2014, 276 students were kidnapped in Chibok and just in November, 49 students were killed in Potiskum. Aside of the North, endemic violence which the securities agencies are incapable of solving thrive in southern Nigeria. This crude oil theft and refining is an organized crime which the government has been incapable of stopping. But no economy develops in the midst of high insecurity.

  In a recent paper, two economists: Stephen Broadberry and Leigh Gardner, in their book: Africa’s Growth Prospects in a European Mirror, A Historical Perspective, say, ‘‘history suggests that such optimism could be misplaced.” Why? Africa’s growth in the past has the habit of growing and falling rapidly. With each decline wiping out the gains made during the growth period.

  The two scholars argue that pre-Industrial Europe’s economic history followed this pattern. Thus, Africa’s economic behaviour isn’t the exception.

  Hence, what Africa needs is breaking this boom and burst cycle, to sustain a continuous economic growth and ensure future prosperity are institutions and vibrant civil society organisations.  It was the Glorious Revolution of 1688 with its various institutional changes, which gradually transformed the political economy of Britain. The revolution brought the balance of power between the Crown and Parliament. But the economic history of Nigeria, in spite of her riches, has been a journey in the wilderness. However, the promise of riches with oil wealth was reversed by the civil war. And since the discovery of oil in Nigeria in 1958, Nigeria has been through several booms and bursts. To protect Nigeria from internal and external shocks, we need institutions such as independent newspapers, radio and television. Others are the Excess Crude Account and the Sovereign Wealth Fund which are shielding the Nigerian economy from declining oil revenues. The active Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the development of a bond market and the Nigerian Stock Exchange are areas promoting our economic development.

  What Nigeria needs at the moment are institutions that ensure security of lives and prosperity – hospitals, state police and independent judiciary. The growing carnage in the North and the unprecedented oil theft in the south present an environment of limitless violence perpetuated by the enemies of the nation who wrested the monopoly of violence from the Nigerian state.

  Finally, in countries wide apart as Israel and Singapore, science, technology and creative innovation lie at the heart of today’s prosperity. Thus, Nigeria must look beyond oil and focus instead on deploying creative problem solving as a means of locking ourselves into the global value chain of prosperity. For effectiveness, government must be able to balance their books. Ancient Roman Empire failed largely because fiscal prudence was not observed. Added to that was moral turpitude. With a stand-by Marshall Plan for the development of small and medium scale enterprises, Nigeria may usher in a golden age of prosperity to the delight of a

HOW TO WALK IN GOD'S PROSPERITY by Bayo Ogunmupe



N 1923, seven of the most successful men in the world met at a Chicago hotel in the United States. The president of the largest independent steel company, the president of the largest utility company, the greatest wheat speculator and the president of the New York Stock Exchange were there. Also attending was a member of the cabinet of the U.S. president, the president of the Bank of International Settlements and the president of the world’s greatest monopoly. Jointly these tycoons controlled more money than there was in the United States Treasury.

  Now 25 years later, let us see what happened to them. Charles Schwab of steel lived his last five years on borrowed money, and he died a pauper. Arthur Cooger, the world’s greatest wheat speculator, Leon Fraser, bank president – all committed suicide, Richard Whitney, the stock exchange guru and Albert Fall the president’s cabinet member were both imprisoned for corruption. If the current world economic upheaval has taught anything it is that money brings neither security nor happiness. ‘‘One’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses,” Luke 12: 14. Yet, God will bless you with money, Deut. 8:18. Jehovah will do this for two reasons. One, because He delights in seeing His children walk in His blessings, Psalms 35:27. Two, because He expects you to use your money to reach a hurting world with God’s love. If you keep those two things in mind, you will be walking in God’s prosperity.

  For those who walk in the vineyard of God’s prosperity, we have found from the Bible book of Joshua that if a person will meditate in the scriptures day and night and do all that is written therein, he will prosper and deal wisely in h is affairs. It is through this kind of meditation in the Word that you will discover what Jehovah has to say about finances.

  Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteh understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver and the gain thereof than fine gold,” Prov. 3: 13, 14. Thus, there is a better market for wisdom and understanding than for gold and silver. The merchandise of it is greater and will provide more.

  The life of King Solomon of ancient Israel proved this. People from all over the world heard  about the wisdom of Solomon and brought him wealth and riches because of it.” She (wisdom) is more precious  than rubies and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour,” Proverbs 3: 15, 16. Wisdom actually possesses riches and honour. Does wisdom belong to us? Again, we go to our covenant with Jehovah for the answer.

  The scriptures say in first Corinthians 1: 30, that Jesus has been made unto us wisdom. And James says: ‘‘If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering,” James 1: 5-6. God affirms in the scriptures that we should bear fruit and succeed in every endeavour. The wisdom of God enables us to do this.

  Besides, I am taking for granted that you understand the efficacy of prayer – in every segment of human endeavour. My exhortation for prosperity is that you should spend time praying before Jehovah and in His word. In financial economics, the truly wise man will not borrow money to do business. He will not obligate himself by relying on the world’s system of finance where he will never be in control of his business affairs. God has a system of finance which will provide for everything you need. The answer is to use this divine and higher way; reach for it.

  Whatever your mind can conceive and believe, you can achieve. God can and will provide anything any businessman can conceive in his heart or mind. But you can only grow spiritually in God’s prosperity. If you want one million naira to start a business, Jehovah will provide the means by which you will get it. But you will start by believing Him for your next suit. Then, you grow into the position at which you can ask Him larger forms of money. The wisdom of God will enable you gain such money just by spending time in prayer with God. By making God your friend and business partner you gain your desires.

  The wisdom of Jehovah is available to you. It resides within you. Bring it into use by meditating and strategizing with God. King David of ancient Israel came up with a plan for building a temple for God. But his son, Solomon actually built it. Thus, you should coin a strategy for building and fulfilling your dream. What is worse than having no dream is to have one without a plan to make it a reality. A strategy gives you energy, direction and focus. A study on how infrequently people develop strategies for achieving their dreams revealed that 26 per cent focus on specific, tangible targets for what they want in life. Nineteen per cent of the team set goals aligned with their purpose, mission and passion; fifteen per cent write their goals in specific measures, twelve per cent maintain a clearly defined goal for every interest and role, another twelve per cent identify related long-term goals with deadlines. Only seven per cent take daily action toward the attainment of their goals. According to the authors of the study, people fail to consistently take the actions necessary to move their dreams and visions out of their hearts into their lives. Dreams don’t come true because you wish them up. They come true because you seek God for direction, put them down on paper with specific actions and timeliness. So stop stargazing and start strategizing.

  Our champion this week is Benjamin Bradlee, the American editor who guided Watergate coverage leading to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Bradlee was an editor of the Washington Post newspaper who oversaw the coverage of the Watergate Scandal. He died last October at the age of 93. Bradlee left a lasting legacy at the Washington Post and in the wider media. He was hailed for having the courage of an army to pursue the scandal leading to the nailing of President Nixon. Bradlee was the greatest American newspaper editor of his time and had the greatest impact on his newspaper of any modern editor. When he charged reporters Robert Woodward and Carl Bernstein with investigating the Watergate scandal, it uncovered a vast surveillance and dirty tricks leading to the impeachment and resignation of the U.S. President in 1974, and the prosecution of scores of federal officials. ‘‘Ben was a leader, genius and true friend of Journalism,” Bernstein and Woodward said in a joint statement on the Washington Post website when the news of his death emerged in October this year.

  Bradlee’s Watergate coverage transformed political journalism and it became the topic of bestselling book and film: All the Presidents Men. Bradlee was born in 1921 to a Boston family which traced its history to early U.S. settlers in 1600. His maternal grandfather was Frederic Crowninshield, a descendant of King John II of France. After graduating from Harvard, Bradlee served as an officer in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

Devaluation as disincentive to economic growth


Devaluation as disincentive to economic growth

By Bayo Ogunmupe

RECENTLY, the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) devalued our currency, the naira from N155 to N184 to the United States dollar. This measure will certainly hurt the Nigerian economy. The announcement came a few days after the federal government announced the introduction of austerity measures following the sharp fall in the price of oil in the world market. In response to the devaluation, inflation is galloping with petroleum scarcity ravaging parts of western Nigeria.
  According to the CBN, devaluation was arrived at in order to curb negative speculation with the naira, particularly by the banks which have been putting great pressure on our legal tender. The devaluation which is plummeting by the day is now about 10 per cent. The step was rendered inevitable by excess liquidity in the banks. In doing this the CBN hopes to tighten the monetary policy framework by allowing some flexibility in exchange rates.
  Devaluation will also stop speculative practices, stop the evaporation of the naira. While we cannot influence the increase in the price of oil, these CBN measures have been adopted without evaluating the impact on the Nigerian economy. Indeed, the net impact of a weak naira is an unsustenable spiral of inflation raising the costs of petroleum products. Sadly, the improper management of the economy and fiscal indiscipline over the years are responsible for the present anxiety. This is all the more so, as oil price had remained far above the budget benchmark for decades, peaking at about $120 per barrel earlier this year.
  Earlier, the volatility of oil prices was long in evidence, but the Federal Government ignored the signals. Thus, the government should be blamed for lack of creative problem solving in not diversifying from our monocultural economy. Ordinarily, devaluation of the naira would not have been a problem if we had plenty of goods to export and little to import, since devaluation benefits exporters.
  Now we are worse of as we shall need more naira to buy goods sold in dollars. Unfortunately, Nigeria cannot manufacture much owing to a combination of factors among which are high cost of production, high interest rates and an unstable power supply, have hampered local industries. Interestingly, the finance minister opined that the interest of the common man is a priority in Federal Government’s strategy for salvaging Nigeria’s economy. We urge the government to clearly demonstrate this through clearly defined programmes and policies that would cushion the people from the effects of devaluation of the naira. Perhaps devaluation and the ensuing austerity measures would have been a blessing in disguise if it would force government to develop other revenue sources, establish fiscal discipline, cut cost of governance and establish an interest free, collateral free and discrimination free bank product to develop the country.
  The second disincentive to economic growth is the abdication of leadership by this we mean that the people in power have refused to enforce and enthrone regulations, which can ensure economic growth. The overbearing attitude of our regulators which culminates in poor attitude to work and abdication of authority and refusal to apprehend regulation violators.
  Besides, most of the policies churned out by the regulatory bodies in Nigeria have over the years effectively succeeded in stifling or restricting and hindering innovation and investment. This has led to a situation where the bureaucracy dictates the pace of the growth of the economy. Another worrying issue is double taxation whereby entrepreneurs are being squeezed by multiple taxes, levies, red tap as states seek to shore up their internally generated revenues. Which is why the World Bank observed that Nigerian businesses spend valuable time and resources trying to comply with a myriad of local regulations.
  As World Bank said further that removing those burdensome regulations is an essential step towards a stronger private sector of the Nigerian economy. After sampling the opinions of world renowned economists, we have come to the conclusion that the key to unveiling the troubles of the Nigerian economy is to be found in recognizing that the rebased economy has highlighted the absence of structures in our economic policy making. This means that there should be an immediate transformation from primary to domesticated value added production.
  Although reports suggest that countries like Thailand, and Malaysia have experienced similar growth in the services sector, but that this in itself does not justify the composition of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) that our rebased economy just revealed. However, world economies are measured by the strength of their industrial capabilities, which give verve to the service sector. If the service sector has revealed an uninspiring contribution of a mere seven per cent, it means that retail trade is driven by imports. This implies that the services sector put a lot of pressure on the exchange rate of the naira.
  However, all over the world, economies are measured by the strength of their industries, which gives verve to the services sector. In Nigeria, the services sector is dominated by wholesale and retail trade. If our manufactures contribute seven per cent to the GDP, it means our retail trade is driven by imports. This puts a lot of pressure on the foreign exchange rates. Given that our earnings from oil are plummeting, the demand for foreign exchange to sustain our imports can only come from running down our external reserves.
  Thus, the federal government should recognize the danger so posed and diversify quickly to forestall an outright collapse of the naira. In this regard FG has to plug distribution loopholes in its Agricultural Transformation Action Plan. It is noteworthy that both manufacturing and agriculture output have remained stagnant. The urgent step required is a collaboration for increased productivity between the federal ministries of Agriculture and Industries, particularly in areas of private sector investment.
  Indeed, the best ways to strengthen the value of the naira are one, expand the volume of non-oil exports and services and two, enhance domestic competitiveness that will reduce the demand for imported goods and services: because a pound saved is a pound earned. Howbeit, we have to expand our manufacturing sector because as long as our industries remain stagnant, for that long would unemployment remain a threat to economic development in our fatherland.

That You May Be Successful Anywhere


On The Path Of Winners
BY BAYO OGUNMUPE

That You May Be Successful Anywhere

GOD wants you to succeed in life – Joshua 1:8. Once you are convinced of success, you should take into account your temperament. A fillet steak cooks best at a very high heat for a short time, but a roast joint cooks best at a lower heat for a longer time. Either way, you can have a delicious meal. You just need to know what kind of meat you have, and how to cook it.
  Two, overcome your fear of being different from others. Because Daniel would not eat the King’s food or bow to his idols, he landed in a lions’ den. But he came out and was promoted to a top spot in government, Daniel 6:28. You cannot be part of the crowd and still stand out. To achieve great things you must trust God, disregard the negative opinions of others and pursue your destiny. Three, resist the apathy that often accompanies ageing. Keep the enthusiasm of your youth and mix it with the wisdom of your old age. Never lose your sense of idealism. Do not let day to day difficulties discourage you or allow life’s disappointments get you down. At every age and stage of life, there are obstacles and advantages, trials and triumphs. It is up to you to make the most of the positive by not letting the negative derail you. At age 70, Apostle Paul said, ‘‘I am ready to come to Rome to preach.” At eighty, Moses led Israel out of slavery. At 85, Caleb said, ‘‘Give me the mountain the Lord promised me.” You are only old when your regrets take the place of your dreams. ‘‘That you may be successful wherever you go,” Joshua 1:7.
  The kernel of the message is that, in spite of your weaknesses, you will succeed wherever you go because real power comes from God, not from us, 2 Corinthians 4:7. We have the treasure in jars of clay to show that this all – surpassing power is from God and not from us. Some people do not read the scriptures because they think it is all about the saints whose lives have no bearing on reality.
  If you feel that way, then read the Torah. The dysfunctional families there will make yours seem normal. Cain was jealous of his brother – Abel, so he murdered him. Lamech introduced polygamy to the world. Noah, the most righteous man in the ancient world got drunk and cursed his children. Abraham slept with his wife’s maid, got her pregnant, then banished her and her son to the wilderness because his wife, Sarah complained about the other woman. Jacob’s firstborn son. Reuben slept with one of his father’s wives. The list is endless.
  The question is, why would Jehovah include this cast of characters in the Bible? To make the point that we are all flawed in some way. We like to think we are normal but by Allah’s definition, we all fall short of the glory of the Almighty. We all have bad habits we are struggling with; past mistakes we cannot undo, and evil tendencies we can’t overcome without His help. God said, ‘‘My power shows up best in weak people,” 2 Corinthians 12:9. If God used perfect people only, His work would never get done.
  Finding enjoyment in all the days which God gives is the reason why you may be successful anywhere. In thousand times in the scriptures, we read, it came to pass: It means nothing is permanent. Things change, only Jehovah lives forever. Knowing that helps you handle bad times, stopping you from clinging so tightly to the good times. Practice these truths: one, enjoy today. It is God’s gift. Solomon said, ‘‘To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life is a gift from God.” Even though you are moving close to a new goal, learn to live in the present. Do not put your joy on hold or let it slip away while you are waiting for your investiture.
  Two, learn to appreciate others, the love of a good friend; a kind deed; a fresh insight, and the delight on your child’s face. When you appreciate what you have, it multiplies. When you are grateful, God will give you more – Mathew 25:23. Three, each ending brings new beginnings. Never believe these myths. First, the forever myth, which says your situation will never improve. The second is the never myth, which says if things get worse you will never be able to handle them. Both are distortions of the Nigerian reality. Everything comes to pass and while you are going through it God promises to strengthen and help you. So any ending brings new beginnings. So continue to trust God with the believe that with Him you will be successful anywhere.
  Our champion this week is Charles Evans Hughes, the American jurist and statesman, who served as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (1910-16), U.S. Secretary of State (1921-25) and the eleventh chief justice of the United States (1930-41). As Chief Justice, he led the supreme court through the controversy arising over President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal social reform orders.
  As a member of a New York law firm, Hughes gained fame in 1905 as counsel to New York state legislative committees investigating abuses in gas, electric power and life insurance business. In 1906, he defeated the flamboyant newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst for governor of New York. Re-elected in 1908, he resigned to accept an appointment to the Supreme Court by President Howard Taft in 1910.
  In 1916, Hughes resigned from the Supreme Court upon receiving the Republican presidential nomination. He was narrowly defeated by President Woodrow Wilson. Warren Harding, Wilson’s Republican successor appointed Hughes secretary of state in 1921. He returned to private law practice at the end of Calvin Coolidge’s first term. Appointed Chief Justice by President Herbert Hoover in 1930, Hughes led a proactive court generally favouring the exercise of federal power. He retired at 79 in 1941. He died at his home in Massachusetts in 1948, aged 86.

How To Attract Prosperity From God


On The Path Of Winners
BY BAYO OGUNMUPE

How To Attract Prosperity From God

HE who soweth sparingly shall reap sparingly and he who soweth bountifully shall also reap bountifully. Every man according to the purpose in his heart, so let him give, not grudgingly or of necessity, for God loveth a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work. Indeed, being enriched in everything to all bountifully – which causes all to be thankful to God.
  The above has been paraphrased from Apostle Paul’s epistle to the Corinthians. It amplifies the way God says you can please Him in order for you to attract prosperity to yourself. And God is able to make every favour and earthly blessing come to you in abundance, so that you may always and under all circumstances and whatever the need, be self-sufficient – possessing enough to require no aid or support and furnished in abundance for every good work and charitable donation.
  We attract whatever we  think about the most whether good or bad. So if you want to be prosperous, think only of prosperity and surround yourself with prosperous and like minded people. When Barrack Obama was running for U.S. presidency, he simulated himself U.S. President by hiring a plane and travelling to the Group of eight richest nations whose leaders were meeting in London at the time. And his dream came true. He won the subsequent election to become the 44th president of the United States.
  The first step is for you to know what you want. Then you envision yourself becoming that person or occupying that office and attaining that goal. Put up the picture of the exact former occupant of that position as your model, like putting up in your room, the picture of Wole Soyinka if you desire to win the Nobel prize in literature. The law of attraction will attract those people who can help you to you, when you act in that way.
  Thereafter, you must not have the slightest doubt in your mind as to whether you will achieve it. Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve. First, you conceive by visioning your goal, secondly you believe, then you attain by achieving it. You do not need to figure out how you are going to achieve it. Don’t seek to control the outcome, just do the necessary visioning and with blind faith and prayer, you will win. If it is a business, you must write out a business plan and if a leadership goal, create your game plan. You will put your game plan into action until you attain your goal.
  Other measures that will help you include: discretion. Loose lips sink ships! ‘‘Discretion will preserve you,” Prov. 2:11. Being discreet means having the ability to keep sensitive information private-including things you may have heard years ago. ‘‘He who is trustworthy conceals a matter,” Pro 11:13. Divulging what you know about other people’s problems may make you feel good momentarily, but afterwards it has a predictably negative impact on your relationships. Thus, you get a reputation of being a person that cannot be trusted. My solicitor, Dr. Kolawole Balogun, Nigeria’s first Minister of Information once advised me: ‘‘If your lips would keep from slips, observe these things: of whom you speak, to whom you speak, how you speak, when and where, then leaders will delight in keeping you company.”
  As you give cheerfully and generously, Jehovah who delights in being called by his personal name, will cause every blessing to come to you. He wants you to be able to give to others, which is why He empowers you with prosperity, so that people can meet their needs through you. Therefore, God will multiply your resources for giving. This is the reason why Bill Gates continues to top the list of the wealthy in the world despite his endless munificence via his donations through his Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation.
  We have been enunciating the laws of prosperity according to the hundred fold return as taught by the Bible book of Mark in Chapter 10. Now let us examine what Jesus taught in Mark. Here, Jesus gave us the parable of the sower, where Christ espouses the first and greatest of rules, the rule of faith, that by believing God by faith, which cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Acting on God’s words brings results. By acting quickly on Jehovah’s word as quickly as you act on the words of your doctor, you attain success. Faith goes into action by causing the laws of the world via the spiritual realm to bring results as you desire.
  There are businessmen who have given great sums for charity, but don’t know how to receive from God. The best way to receive gifts from God is to invest in the ministry of finance. Men are being called today by God into the ministry of finance as Scriptures refers to the ministries of helps and governments as in 1 Corinthians 12:28. These men work through professionals. If you want to invest in the stock market, you go to the stockbroker, if you want to invest in newspaper publishing, you go to the journalist, such as the way to invest and attract prosperity from Jehovah. You have to prosper others before you become prosperous.
  Our champion for today is Philipp Scheidemann, the German Social Democratic politicians who, without party or government authorization, in November 1918, made the Weimar Republic of Germany a fact by proclaiming it from the balcony of the Reightag (the German Parliament). He later became the republic’s first chancellor. Philipp Scheidemann was a journalist and from 1903 a member of Parliament for Social Democratic Party. Scheidemann joined the majority of his party in supporting Germany’s participation in World War I.
  Toward the end of the war, he was made minister without portfolio in the last imperial cabinet (October 1918). Although his party had planned to support a constitutional monarchy in Germany, Philipp’s proclamation of a republic, made in the face of leftist uprisings, was irreversible. From November 1918 to February 1919 he served on the six-member ruling council of the republican government. After serving as chancellor (February to June 1919) of the Weimar Republic, he resigned rather than assenting to the Versailles Treaty which ended the First World War. Subsequently, he served as the mayor of his birthplace, Kassel (1920-25). As an outspoken critic of the reactionary parties, an attempt to assassinate him in 1922 miscarried. When Adolf Hitler came to power in 1933, he fled to Copenhagen, Denmark where he died in November 1939. Philipp taught us that by being discreet and courageous, we can become heroes. He single handedly made Germany a republic.
 

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Let us Pause a Little


Let us Pause a Little

By Bayo Ogunmupe
LET’S Paulse a Little is the title of a book by Tosin Akande, a lawyer, pastor, printer and motivational speaker. While Pastor Benny Hinn explained the Holy Spirit in his book, Good Morning, Holy Spirit, Akande appropriated the triune God in his Let’s Paulse a Little. Thus, this book is about giving God His incontestable and unassailable place in the life of a Christian. It cannot be over emphasized that we must give Him top priority, making Him the only reason, to the exclusion of any other reason for any action on the body of Christ. Like the Christ deferred to God, we also began to defer to Him, with fiery worship power as in Bible times.
  Let us Paulse, clearly inspired by the Holy Spirit, and with the aid of the Principle called 35 of 32, Tosin Akande, the author drives home the point of the power and supremacy of Jehovah over everything. This goes against Nigeria’s emerging belief in a triune God where God shares power with Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
  Another higher point of the book, which inspired its Pauline title is the assessment of the life and times of Apostle Paul as the builder of Christianity. The author rejoices with Paul in boldly establishing, without reservations, the fact of the sovereignty of Jehovah over all including the Lord Jesus.
  Perhaps it is necessary to explain the current role of Jesus the Christ. While he was on earth, Jesus cured the sick, raised the dead and rescued people in peril. He thereby demonstrated what he will do in the future for all obedient mankind, Mat. 15: 30, John 5:28. After Jesus died, God restored him to life as a spirit being, 1 Peter 3: 8. Jesus then waited at God’s right hand until Jehovah gave him power to rule as King in heaven, Daniel 7:13, 14; Mathew 24:14. The Pauline connection calls for the title of this book: Let’s Paulse A Little, meaning, let us pause a little to straighten some of Paul’s errors during his evangelism. In these days of grand deception, it is necessary to clarify the Word of God lest the people are deceived. Akande hereby clarifies the spoken words of Jehovah as a necessary ingredient of navigating a successful and daily Christian living.
  Published in 2013 by Pass Mark Associates, Mafoluku, Lagos; Lets Paulse A Little has 10 chapters, an introduction, a dedication, endorsements and 194 pages. Since the author is a publisher, it is boldly printed. In the introduction, the author avers that Benny Hinn the Jewish American pastor said in his book, Good Morning Holy Spirit, that the holy Spirit is individually given. Thus, this arrests the dogma that the Holy Spirit is one, which most if not all Christians religious denominations in Nigeria preach. However, he went out to repudiate this allusion to Unitarianism which stresses reason in religion. Unitarians believe God exists in one person. They deny the divinity of Jesus and the doctrine of Trinity.
  To me, Akande’s allusion to Benny Hinn was unnecessary since he later embraced the triune God, and going in great length to explain the hierarchical relationship among the persons of the Trinity. He put God at the apex thereby bringing readers to remembrance that all flows from God alone. Like most Nigerians I have met, except the Jehovah witnesses, he lacked the courage to denounce the trinity.
  A strange feature of God’s sovereignty is the bargaining tendencies of Jehovah. Unlike despots, who never negotiate with their subjects, the Most High God negotiated in the scriptures with such persons as Abraham, Cain, Ezekiel and even Satan.
  However, another Biblical proof of God’s supremacy is 3 John 14:28: ‘‘ You have heard me say,” I am going away and coming back to you’ if you love me, you would rejoice because I said, I am going to my Father,’ for my father is greater than I.” A statement from Jesus like this is likened to what you cannot ignore. It was revealed by God himself in chapter eight of the book of Ezekiel, Acts 17:11, which gives an insight into the Berean Christians. This chapter defines the Christian heritage. In the chapter, Luke commended Bereans for their passion for the reading of the scriptures, their belief in their pastors including Apostle Paul, Luke himself and the early church.
  ‘‘These were more fair minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the Word with all readiness, and searched the scriptures, daily to find out whether these things were so,” Acts 17:11. It is this Berean way of life that the author wishes to promote. That way of life seeks to give Jehovah greater priority over the church. Thus, if the bible praised a people for doing exactly what this book seeks to do, then it is a welcome development in heaven and here on earth.
  Therefore, the aim of Let’s Paulse A Little is to give greater priority to God’s direct words. We need to understand clearly that both the Spoken and Written words of God are our guides but more important is the spoken word. Emanating from this is the principle which emphasizes the need for Christians to put into perspective that every doctrine must be measured with the settled, direct and personal words of Jehovah.
  My grouse with the author lies in the title. Paulse does not exist as an English word and therefore should not have been used as a book title. What he needed to do was to explain what he meant as the need for Christians to redefine Pauline Liturgy. It means we should situate Paul’s interpretation of scripture in the context of the Written and Spoken Words of Jehovah. Perhaps it will be necessary to retranslate or revisit the original Greek and Hebrew scripts of the Bible to get to roots of the confusion.
  However, Tosin Akande has done a good job by writing the book. Born in Ebute Metta, Lagos, Toyin now coordinates the Forum for Senior Citizens of Nigeria (FSCN), on online forum that seeks respect for senior citizens aged 65 and above. Though not a subsistent  pastor, Mr. Akande has taught the scriptures in Lagos, Abuja, Ghana and the United Kingdom. He studied Mass Communication at Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta and took a law degree from the University of Lagos. As a publisher, he is the spokesman for Christian Writers Association of Nigeria (CWAN), an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM), and the Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM). He works at the National Assembly in Abuja as a Parliamentary Counsel. He is married to Titilope and they had a son and daughter.

HOW TO BUILD TRUE HAPPINESS


By Bayo Ogunmupe
THE ultimate goal of human life is happiness. Since a man can be prosperous without being happy, the greatest good then is happiness. We are all seeking prosperity in order to be happy. But true prosperity is the ability to use God’s power to meet the needs of the people. This covers much more than finances. Money isn’t the only factor in happiness. You can have all the money and still be poverty-stricken spiritually, mentally and physically. God’s power to give happiness covers the entire spectrum of human existence. To live a happy life, your soul must prosper in all the truth of the scriptures.
  Lasting happiness isn’t based solely on achievements or acquisitions. Rather like good physical health, true happiness depends on a variety of factors. Every human is unique. What makes me happy may not make you happy. Likewise, we change as we grow old. Moreover, some things are more consistently associated with happiness. For instance, happiness is linked to contentment, avoiding envy, cultivating altruism and emotional resilience.
  ‘‘Money is a protection,” observed King Solomon of ancient Israel. He also wrote: ‘‘A lover of silver will never be satisfied with silver, nor a lover of wealth with income. This too is vanity,” Ecclesiastes 5:10, 7:12. The point is that while man may need money to survive, we should avoid greed. The writer, King Solomon actually experimented to see whether wealth and luxury fostered true happiness.
  Having amassed great wealth, Solomon built grand houses, built beautiful parks and pools and acquired numerous servants. He got whatever he wanted. These experiments made him somewhat happy. But not for the length of his life. Thus, Solomon learnt that everything was futile. ‘‘There was nothing of real value,” Solomon said: Ecclesiastes 2:11, 17, 18. The lessons he learned were that a life of self indulgence ultimately leaves you empty and unfulfilled.
  Fortunately, modern studies support this ancient wisdom. An article in the Journal of Happiness studies observed that ‘‘after one’s basic needs are satisfied, additional income does little to advance one’s subjective well-being.” Indeed, findings show that increased material consumption especially at the cost of moral and spiritual values, do erode happiness. The scriptures aver: ‘‘Let your way of life be free of the love of money, while you are content with the present things,” Hebrews 13:5.
  For envy, this is defined as the painful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another, accompanied by a desire to possess the same advantage. Like a malignant growth, envy can takeover one’s life and destroy one’s happiness. How might we recognize and combat envy? Psychologists observe that people tend to envy their equals in age, experience and social background. A journalist for example, may not envy a famous film star. But he might envy a more successful fellow newsman.
  To recognize envy, ask yourself if you delight in a peer’s successes? Are you gleeful when your classmate fails in some way; then you are nurturing envy. Sadly, envy can poison your capacity to enjoy the good things of life, for it can snuff out feelings of gratitude for your life’s many gifts. Such tendencies are hardly conducive to happiness. You can combat envy by cultivating genuine humility and modesty which enables you to appreciate and value the abilities and the good qualities of others. ‘‘Do nothing out of contentiousness or out of egotism,” the Bible says ‘‘but with humility consider others superior to you,” Philippians 2:3.
  To gain happiness, avoid sin. When lust concedes, it brings sin and when sin grows up, it brings forth death to paraphrase a biblical aphorism. When we were young, we think we can sin and get away with it. But as we grow wiser and more mature, we know better. You will never meet a smoker who recommends his habit. Besides, you will meet few whose marriages have been shipwrecked, recommending an affair. The law of harvesting is: ‘‘Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap,” Galatians 6:7.
  Happiness does not come by getting. It comes by forgetting yourself and living for others. Job, one of the richest men in the ancient world lost his health, his wealth and his family. Then an amazing thing happened. Jehovah restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. He actually got back twice what he lost, by reaching out to others instead of dwelling on his own problems. That principle still works today. God blesses you so that you can become a blessing to others. You are not supposed to be a warehouse, but a clearing house.
  Our champion today is Jim Yong Kim, the Korean American physician, anthropologist and philanthropist. He has been the President of the World Bank since July 2012. He was president of Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, USA, from 2009 to 2012. He was formerly the chair of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a founder and executive director of Partners In Health.
  Kim was born in December 1959 in Seoul, South Korea. He moved with his parents to the U.S. at five and grew up at Iowa where his father taught dentistry at the University of Iowa.
  After two years at the University of Iowa, Kim transferred to Brown University, graduating first class in 1982. He was awarded an MD at Harvard School of Medicine in 1991 and a PhD in anthropology by Harvard University in 1993. Along with four other distinguished physicians, Kim co-founded Partners In Health (PIH) in 1987. The PIH achieved remarkable progress treating hundreds of thousands of tuberculosis patients in Haiti in the 1990s.
  The PIH model was expanded in Peru in 1994, its extreme success prompted the World Health Organisation (WHO) to embrace the model. Kim left PIH to join WHO in 2003. From post of adviser, WHO appointed Kim the director of its HIV/AIDS. Kim started as lecturer in Harvard in 1993, eventually he became a professor of medicine and an authority in tuberculosis. His quarter century career working to improve health in developing countries earned Kim the presidency of the World Bank in 2012. Kim was named the world’s 50th most powerful person by Forbes magazine in 2013. He is married to Younsook Lim, a pediatrician. They have two sons.

The Habit Of Highly Motivated People


On The Path Of Winners
BY BAYO OGUNMUPE
url.jpgThe Habit Of Highly Motivated People

EXRAORDINARY achievers are driven to go above and beyond; they are trusted by others, they are focused and confident of their own abilities. They dream of endless possibilities and are extremely satisfied with their lives. They often raise a dream project, maintain longer relationships and they get recruited more often than their unmotivated peers. The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential are the keys that unlock the door to personal excellence and fulfillment.
  Seeking and achieving your dreams means you are really living your dream. So, to get motivated and become all you can be, try these habits of extraordinarily motivated people. Soon you too will find the courage to live the life of fulfilled dreams. One, achievers are internally motivated. It is their intrinsic desire to succeed, the urge to be their best selves drives their motivation, driving them toward new adventures, the unfolding journey and possible outcomes, which they relish, challenging themselves with new avenues for learning and exploration.
  Two, they don’t waste time judging where to go. They objectify the success and failure of others, instead of judging or comparing themselves with others. They don’t waste their time being judgmental and gossipy. Winners are humble, willing to admit their mistakes and apologize. They encourage feedback from others and use it to take steps in the right direction.
  Four, winners focus on what is working rather than bad experiences which many mediocre tend to focus on. They often focus on what others are doing right. Five, they are authentic, true to themselves in spite of what others may think. They don’t live their lives to please others. Six, they push beyond their comfort zones by facing discomfort head on in the pursuit of their dreams. They never choose the easy route in order to get what they want. They trust their abilities to gain success by shunning annoying internal voices that say, ‘‘you are going beyond your powers.”
  Seven, extraordinary people are lifelong learners. They read a lot and are brilliant observers. They are always searching for new, more efficient and faster ways to achieve their goals. They understand that in order for them to grow, as a person, they must always continue to learn.
  Eight, they know what they want because they have a clear vision of what they want to be at the end of their lives. This clarity of vision grants them the wisdom to know what things to harness and what to avoid. Their motto is ‘‘All things are possible to him that believeth.” They believe anything is possible. Nine, they don’t give-up. When they stumble over a problem, they come up with a plan to solve it, take action and surmount it. They never quit because they understand quitting is the surest way to lose a battle.
  Ten, they don’t blame others or create scapegoats for their failures. They believe that ultimately they alone are in charge of their lives, actions and choices. Eleven, they take time for themselves. They know that in order to stay motivated, they have to carve out niches for themselves. They believe taking care of their persons are more important to them than material possessions. Finally, they surround themselves with highly motivated people. Their friends are those who are trustworthy, positive and supportive of bringing out the best in others. They make friends with helpers who help them to take on the world side by side and help them to get back on their feet again, when needed.
  The hallmark of winners is to believe while others are doubting. Plan while others are playing. Act while others are delaying. Prepare while others are day-dreaming. Begin while others are procrastinating. Work while others are wishing. Save while others are wasting. Listen while others are talking. Persist while others are quitting. To win in life requires three things. One, you must start immediately that seems obvious, but many of us are stuck in the starting blocks, waiting for something to propel us on. What has God called or equipped you to do? Step out and do it, and He will empower you.
  Two, you must give your ambition your all. Divers in the Olympics don’t save any of their efforts for their final dive. They concentrate on nailing every single one, increasing their chances for a gold medal. Don’t settle for mediocrity at any stage of your life. You must never quit. In the 1992 Olympics, Derek Redmond of Britain was in the 400 metre race when he suffered a torn hamstring and fell. As the other runners breezed past him, he began struggling to his feet. His father in tears, suddenly ran down from the stands to help him. Slowly, agonizingly, they made their way to the finish line as the stadium in Barcelona burst into thunderous applause. Redmond didn’t win a medal, but he won something greater, he won the respect of the world. The scriptures say, ‘‘Run in such a way as to get the prize,” 1 Corinthians 9:24.
  Our champion this week is Neville Chamberlain, the British Prime Minister from May 1937 to May 1940, whose name is linked with the policy of appeasement toward Adolf Hitler’s Germany in the period preceding World War II. Neville was the son of Joseph Chamberlain, British  businessman and former secretary of state for the colonies, Neville was also the younger half brother of the 1925 Nobel peace prize winner, Sir Austen Chamberlain – who was British foreign secretary from 1924 to 1929.
  Neville Chamberlain was born in Birmingham in March 1869, elected lord mayor of the city in 1915 and elected a conservative member of Parliament from 1919. He served as postmaster general (1922-23), Minister of Health (1923, 1924-29, 1931) and chancellor of the exchequer (1923-24, 1931-37). He became prime minister in 1937. In a futile attempt to sway Benito Mussolini’s Italy from German influence, Chamberlain barred British ships from the Mediterranean, recognizing Italian supremacy in Ethiopia.
  In an effort to prevent the outbreak of World War II, he acceded to Hitler’s demands which left Czechoslovakia defenceless. When Hitler seized Czechoslovakia in 1939, Chamberlain had to repudiate the Munich Agreement of 1938. He started peacetime military conscription for the first time in British history. Then Chamberlain took into his war cabinet his foremost critic – Winston Churchill as first lord of the admiralty, that is, the minister responsible for the imperial navy.
  After British defeat in Norway in 1940, Chamberlain lost the support of his party in Parliament and was forced to resign in May 1940. For his background as a soldier, the Queen appointed Winston Churchill as prime Minister to help her return peace to Europe. Chamberlain served Churchill loyally as lord president of the council till he died a few weeks later. My choice of Chamberlain is meant to rebut the Presidential Assistant on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe who said no leader ever resigned during war. Medical doctor Okupe is an example of putting square pegs in round holes, which has bedeviled public administration in Nigeria.

Living According To The Will Of God


On The Path Of Winners
BY BAYO OGUNMUPE
Hebrew-Scripture.jpg

Living According To The Will Of God

HERE are six steps by which you can enjoy the life God wants you to live. One, believe that Jehovah wants you to succeed in life, so abandon the unscriptural notion that this life has no meaning. Allah has a special work for you which was why He created you. You ask, ‘‘What defines success?”
  The progressive achievement of your God given goal resulting in feeling good about yourself is the answer to your question. ‘‘Carefully follow the terms of this covenant, so that you may prosper in everything you do,” Deut. 29:9. Two, consult God before setting your life goals. According to the scriptures, ‘‘We can make plans, but God determines our steps,” Proverbs 16:9. If you are constantly tired and confused, you may be on the wrong track. Go back and check with God. Perhaps you misconstrued His goal for you. But certainly, it is His will for you to triumph in such areas of your life as: spiritual, relational, physical, mental, social and financial.
  ‘‘Whatever he does shall prosper,” Psalm 1:3. Three, invest in yourself. ‘‘Though it costs all you have, get understanding,” Proverbs 4:7. If you are willing to spend money in fine restaurants but not on good books, your future is already determined. Cultivate a teachable spirit. ‘‘Let the wise listen and add to their learning,” Proverbs 1:5.
  Four, do something by mapping out your goals. Five, do something on your goals today. Six, do something everyday. We read about those who sail around the world in a thirty foot sailboats or those who overcame great handicaps to win gold medals at the Olympics. We later find their stories are all about persistence.
  If you want to know your future, look at your daily routine. You don’t determine your future, you determine your habits and your habits determine your future. The secret to success lies in doing the right things day after day. If you do that, you will eventually succeed. But here is a caveat, important priorities have a way of slipping out of place while you are focused on less important things. Some sacrifices are simply not worth it. One, in your attempt to build a reputation, do not lose your character. Reputation is what people think you are, character is what God and your associates know you are. Two, don’t sacrifice your family for your career, if you do, you will end up winning the admiration of the mediocre while losing the love of those who matter.
  Three, do not sacrifice your relationship with God for material things. Jehovah said: ‘‘You may say to yourself, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me” but remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth; if you ever forget the Lord, you will surely be destroyed,” Deut. 8: 17-18. Furthermore, ‘‘Be careful not to do your acts of righteousness in front of others, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven,” Mathew 6:1.
  What you think, know or believe is, in the end of little consequence. The only thing of consequence is what you do. If you are serious at succeeding in your calling, you must take steps through action. Sir Edmund Burke, the British orator and statesman said, ‘‘Nobody made a greater mistake, than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.” Praying is good, but there comes a point when you have to step out in faith and act. And if you are the diffident type, you have to confront your fear and take the step by acting. God promised the Jews to part River Jordan so that they can enter Canaan. But the waters parted only after they stepped into the river, Joshua 3: 11-17. The same principle applies to you. It is easier to learn by doing. It is easier to stear a car when it is moving than when it stands still. So before the sun sets today, do something that will move you further toward your dream.
  Our champion today is Carl Lotus Becker, the famous American historian known for his work on American intellectual history and on the 18th century Enlightenment. Born in September 1873 near Waterloo, Iowa, Becker died in 1945. He was educated at the Universities of Wisconsin and Columbia, Becker taught at the University of Kansas, Lawrence from 1902 to 1916 and at Cornell University, New York, from 1917 until he retired in 1941. In The Beginning of the American People (1915), he advanced in his doctoral thesis of a dual American Revolution – the first being the struggle for self government from Britain and the second, the ideological battle over the form such government should take.
  In the Eve of the Revolution (1918) and the Declaration of Independence (1922), Becker probed the relationship between 18th century natural rights Philosophy and the American Revolution. During the 1920s, he began challenging the orthodox assumption of the superiority of a scientific methodology in historical study. Becker examined the ideas of 18th Century Enlightenment Philosophers, stressing their intellectual fervor and their success in bridging traditional Christianity with Enlightenment secularism. During World War II, he urged the need for a reinsertion of moral statements in historical writing.