“Making good choices consistently is the secret to success”
The reason why some are better than others is not only talent. Yes, there are specially gifted people with great talents, but if they don’t consistently develop their talent, it will be buried.
You might be exceptionally gifted when it comes to playing the piano, but if you never get to play, that gift will stay buried inside of you. There are without a doubt many people who could have developed their talent to a much higher level, but because they lack consistency when it comes to improving, they never reach their potential.
Consistency is contrary to human nature
Aldous Huxley once wrote “Consistency is contrary to nature, contrary to life. The only completely consistent people are the dead”. Huxley has a point here and I agree that consistency is contrary to human nature. I would actually say that most good habits are contrary to human nature, and I believe this is because we are living in a world suffering from the effect of sin. This is also why personal improvement has to be a conscious choice.
If you leave your garden to naturally grow as it wishes, you will quickly have a garden full of weeds and it will not be a beautiful sight. The same goes for you mind. Your mind is like a garden and if you leave the development up to chance, it will be full of weeds. Personal growth requires being conscious about making the right choices, and doing it consistently.
The priest and the gardener
There once was a priest that walked by a beautiful garden. He stopped to admire the beautiful sight and as he was standing there, the gardener walked by. The gardener greeted the priest and stopped to exchange a few words. As they were talking, the priest said to the gardener. “God has surely done a wonderful work with this garden”. The gardener was silent for a moment before answering back: “Yes, if it had not been for God, none of these flowers or trees would have grown, but you should have seen what this garden looked like when God had it for himself”.
I believe this is a good illustration when it comes to personal growth. Yes, God is the giver of life and without him everything would collapse. But our life is a garden given to us by God. What we do with the garden we have been given is our gift to God.