A successful businessman was growing old and knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business. Instead of choosing one of his Directors or his children, he decided to do something different.
He gathered the young executives in his company. He said, “It is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO. I have decided to choose one of you. ”
The executives were shocked. The boss continued “I am going to give each one of you a SEED today – one special SEED. I want you to plant it, water it, and come back one year from today with what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be the next CEO.”
One man, Jim, went home and excitedly told his wife the story. She got a pot, soil and helped plant the seed.
Every day, he’d water it and watch to see if it had grown.
After a few weeks, the executives began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow. Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew. Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by, still nothing.
By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn’t have a plant and he felt like a failure. Six months went by – nothing. Jim knew he killed his seed. Everyone had plants and trees…he had nothing. Jim didn’t say anything to his colleagues, however. He just kept watering and fertilizing the soil – He so wanted the seed to grow.
They were beautiful — in all shapes and sizes. Jim put his empty pot on the floor and many of his colleagues laughed, a few felt sorry for him!
When the CEO arrived, he greeted his executives. Jim tried to hide in the back. “My, what great plants, trees, and flowers you have grown,” said the CEO. “Today one of you will be appointed the next CEO!”
All of a sudden, the CEO saw Jim at the back of the room with his empty pot and ordered Jim to come forward. Jim was terrified. He thought, “The CEO knows I’m a failure! Maybe he will have me fired!”
When Jim got to the front, the CEO announced, “Behold your next Chief Executive Officer! His name is Jim!”
Jim couldn’t believe it. Jim couldn’t even grow his seed. “How could he be the new CEO?” the others said.
Then the CEO said, “One year ago today, I gave everyone in this room a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it, and bring it back to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds; they were dead – it was not possible for them to grow. All of you, except Jim, have brought me trees and plants and flowers. When you realized that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you. Jim was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be the new CEO!”
* If you plant honesty, you will reap trust
* If you plant goodness, you will reap friends
* If you plant humility, you will reap greatness
* If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment
* If you plant consideration, you will reap perspective
* If you plant hard work, you will reap success
* If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation
* If you plant faith in God, you will reap a harvest
Be aware of what you plant now; it will determine what you reap.
“Don’t be misled–you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.” Galatians 6:7