Stephen Covey died in 2012 as a result of complications arising from a bicycle accident. Stephen was considered the pioneer of the self-help genre that aimed at helping people live more productively. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, which was published in 38 languages and sold over 20 million copies was his most notable publication. I have a couple of copies of Seven Habits on my bookshelf at home along with a copy of First Things First which Stephen co-wrote with Roger Merrill.

Stephen Covey

In Seven Habits Stephen mapped out his seven habits paradigm with each of the habits in sets of three moving a person from DEPENDENCE to INDEPENDENCE and finally to INTERDEPENDENCE. He recognised that personal effectiveness is greatly improved when we acknowledge and give credence to the part others play in our effectiveness rather than adopting the motto of Frank Sinatra’s song, “I Did It My Way.”

Our greatest effectiveness is achieved however, when we take a further step forward toward dependence again. This time a dependence on God.

The habits or practices in this case include the cultivation of a daily personal relationship with our Heavenly Father where we seek His will and purpose for our lives and act in obedience, trusting Him in all things.

This is wonderfully illustrated by Jesus in His well known Sermon on the Mount found in chapters 5 – 7 of Matthew’s gospel. In these chapters Jesus espouses the habits and attitudes that will put us on the path to effectiveness and a healthy and fulfilling future.


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