On May 8, 1886, a pharmacist named Dr. John Pemberton introduced Coca-Cola at Jacobs' Pharmacy in downtown Atlanta, where it sold for 5 cents a glass. Today, more than 1.4 billion servings of their products are enjoyed every day - nearly a million servings every minute. But in its first year, 1886, the company sold an average of only 9 drinks a day. Today, Coca-Cola is available in more than 200 countries around the world. In 1886, Coca-Cola was available in one city in one country. Today, that Company offers more than 400 brands. In 1886 (and in fact until the 1950s), it offered just one - Coca-Cola. That is quite a change from its humble beginnings almost 134 years ago!
My very first words to you today will simply be these: despise not your humble beginnings! David was a shepherd boy who was not even "counted" when Samuel came knocking on Yishai's door ("Yishai" is Hebrew for the English rendition, Jesse) - yet he became the king of Israel and Judah - a man after God's own heart. Jesus Himself, God made man, came to us, not like some superhero to be glorified or some important person to be worshipped. No! He was laid in a manger, wrapped in swaddling clothes, and lived the humble and hard life of a carpenter! Yet today He is better known than any superstar on the planet - and His followers, those who believe in Him and in His atoning sacrifice for all mankind, are like the grains of sand on the seashore. Not bad for a Jewish carpenter's foster son, right?
As Pastor John Gray says, "Everybody wants the platform but nobody wants the process." It's not a curse, dear friend, to begin small - to start from places where no one expects you to blossom, to thrive in that field of endeavour, to beat the very best and become a household name. As the word of God reveals in 1 Peter 1:6-7, "Be glad about this, even though it may now be necessary for you to be sad for a while because of the many kinds of trials you suffer. Their purpose is to prove that your faith is genuine. Even gold, which can be destroyed, is tested by fire; and so your faith, which is much more precious than gold, must also be tested, so that it may endure."
Have faith. Hold on to the dream. Just because your start is bitter does not mean the end will not be sweet. Just put in the prayer and committed work and never give up. Someday you will beam and be grateful to God that you did not give up. These humble beginnings you see today are the launch pads for unimaginable greatness. You only have to believe and, like Mary the Mother of Jesus in the Bible, work on that which you have believed.
"DO NOT GO BY MY HUMBLE BEGINNINGS. BE WARY OF MY ENORMOUS VISION." -Manoj Arora
BE BLESSED AND BE A BLESSING ONTO ALL...