We are the chosen people of our Heavenly Father. We have a destiny to fulfill, a life to live, a contribution to make, a goal to achieve. The future of our country in these rapidly changing times awaits our mark of influence.
We have been provided with the blessing of free agency. The pathway is marked. The blessings and penalties are shown clearly. But the choice is up to us. Of course there will be opposition. There always has been and always will be. That evil one, even Satan, desires that we become his followers, rather than leaders in our own right. He has evil and designing men as his agents. Together they conspire to make evil appear to be good. In a most enticing manner he cunningly invites: "This is the way to freedom and happiness ...come." As we witnessed the negative ads in newspapers, radio, TV even at Pangi Si'i. Yet, that still, small voice within us cautions: "Not so. This doesn't seem right."
A choice has to be made. There are no minor or insignificant decisions in our search for truth. Decisions determine destiny. Whether we like it or not, we are engaged in the race for the good of our Country. What will be the outcome? Will we be the people of God? Or will we be servants of sin?
May I offer a simple formula for successful leadership and a noble life:
First, live right. Let us study the 1875 Pouono history, then live their teachings. Following Tupou I's guide, let us implement in our lives a set of Be Attitudes:
Then we can be as Savior admonished, a light unto the Island of Tonga. This is true leadership: a leader in righteousness; an example of purity; a defender of truth. We cannot compromise our principles and retain the respect of others.
A simple motto to follow is to "Choose the Right." Fili e totonu! 'oku 'i ai e melino 'i he ngaue lelei;
Fili e totonu! 'oku malu'i e loto pea langa'i-lotomafana;
Fili e totonu! 'i he fatongia kotoa pe 'oku ke fakahoko';
Tuku ki he 'Otua 'oe Hevani ke hoko ko ho maama taki'.
Second, prepare well. Our thoughts must be part of a purposeful plan, if the New Government we have envisioned is to become a reality. The Lord Jesus Christ taught: "Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing."
At times the preparation period may appear dull, uninteresting, and even unnecessary. But experience continues to demonstrate that the future belong to those who prepare for it. And if we are to become leaders, we cannot skimp on our preparation.
Patterns of living and codes of behavior during the preparation period have a way of carrying over into actual life. John Dryden warned: "All habits gather by unseen degrees... As brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas." First we could break them if we would. Then we would break them if we could.
Spiritual preparation is vital. Spirituality is not like a water faucet in that it can be turned off or turned on at will. Some make the fatal error of assuming that religion is for others now and perhaps someday for us. Such thinking is not based on fact or experience, for we are daily becoming what we shall be. To be prepared spiritually for leadership overshadows all other types of preparation. I challenge each of you (Hon Ministers, Nobles) to prepare well.
Third, work hard. A wise leader cautioned, "When you play, play hard. When you work, don't play at all." Leadership requires effort, hard work, a do-or-die philosophy.
When we speak of work as an essential ingredient of leadership, we speak also of teamwork. Getting along with others must be part of our work and service pattern, or leadership assignments will pass us by. One cannot perform all of the needed work by himself. J. C. Penney, the business leader, advised, My definition of leadership is brief and to the point. It is simply this: Getting things done through the aid of other people. Cooperativeness is not so much learning how to get along with others as taking the kinks out of yourself so that others can get along with you." I challenge each of you ( Hon Ministers) to work hard.
Fourth and finally, think big. When we realize that we become what we think about, then our thoughts take on added importance. We live in a world made small by the inventions of science and the exploration of space. In these days wonders are wrought and we shrug and dismiss them as commonplace. On a television screen that none could imagine not too many years ago, we have seen man climb to the heights of the universe, step into space, and walk on the thin floor of nothingness. We have seen greater strides into the mysteries of science than others have known in all history. This is not the age of minute goals, mediocre accomplishment, or shallow thought. We must think big.
We cannot restrict our thinking to the past and today's problems alone. We have the obligation to plan for tomorrow's opportunities. We are limited only by our thoughts and personal determination to convert these thoughts to realities.
Henry Ford, the industrialist, taught us, "An educated man is not one who has trained his mind to retain a few dates in history. He is one who can accomplish things. Unless a man has learned to think, he is not an educated man, regardless of how many college degrees he has after his name."
I challenge each of you to think big, and, I might add, think wisely.
SUCCESS RESULTS WHEN PREPARATION MEETS OPPORTUNITY
Ko e takimu'a lelei ne tofa 'e he 'Ene 'Afio 'i he 'ene 'ikuna'i 'a e ako faka'atamai 'a ia na'e fa'u ki ai 'a e ta'anga 'oe ngaahi kuonga koee.
TAA KOE SOLA KIMOUTOLU SELUSALEMA
KO TUPOU IV KO E BA.MA.LLB.
POTO NA'E HAA HE KILUKILUA
NE PAASI PE HE TA'UU 'E UA
TOLU TA'U PE KUO NE IKUNA LAO 'O NATULA
NEONGO KO E TAHI 'OE HAKULAA MOE 'ANGA
PEA 'AHIA 'E TENIFA MOE TOFUA'A
NE TOKI TU'U 'O HIKI E FONUA KI HE TUMUTUMU 'OE PASIFIKI.
HEIKAI NGATA SI'EKU VIKI' ME'A ATU KI HO FAKA'OSI'
'ILO 'E HE 'ATOLOFILOSOFI 'OKESIFOOTI 'UNIVEESITII'
'OKU NE LOLOTONGA FUA NI A TONGA HE TUMUTUMU 'OE PASIFIKI.
'Api ko Tali ki Tahi
Barrow, Alaska, USA
siatahi [at] yahoo [dot] com