Even if God helps us, sometimes we still have to put in the effort to our crafts to succeed in our overall results. God can do so much through us and work well through us when we decide to cooperate with Him.
The Bible has several scriptures that imply sometimes success without diligence is nearly impossible to achieve. For instance; the book of Proverbs chapter 13 verse 4 says “Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper.” Or in Proverbs chapter 10 verse 4, which says “Sloth makes you poor; diligence brings wealth.” But also in the book of Galatians chapter 6 verse 9, it says “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.”
All those scriptures suggest that it pays off to be diligent; this is not about work related only, but also in all aspects of life. Especially during when things are working well for us, that’s when we need to increase our diligence so that we can maximize the opportunities placed before us.
Apostle Paul said in the book of 1 Corinthians chapter 15 verse 10, “But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out His special favor on me and not without results. For I have worked harder than any of the other Apostles; yet it was not I but God Who was working through me by His grace.” Another translation says “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.”
When Apostle Paul realized it was God’s grace working in his life, he worked even harder, and not taking it for granted. In other words, Apostle Paul was able to work even harder and able to accomplish much when He realized that God’s grace was working in his life.
The Bible says in the book of Psalm chapter 127 verse 1 that “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.”
So the vice versa is also the fact; working hard also does not guarantee you success either. We have to combine the two; work hard and smart, but also rely and depend on God, trusting Him that He cares enough to help us succeed.
When we know God is with us, we can work hard but in a rest mode, knowing that He is guiding us along the way and all is going to be well with us. When we are doing God’s Will for our lives, we can be confident because of our partnership with God, whatever He has begun in our lives, God will continue the good work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns (Philippians 1:6). So as we keep moving forward with our lives, doing what we have been graced to do, God will help and bring us to a flourishing finish.
If we don’t commit our plans to God and ask for His help, we are like builders who build and labor in vain. We need God to be fruitful and succeed. Apostle Paul said in the book of 1 Corinthians chapter 3 verse 6, “I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God Who made it grow.” It is God Who gives us the increase.
The Bible even advices us more to be diligent and work heartily as for the Lord and not for men. In the book of Colossians chapter 3 verse 23, it says “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”
It’s easy to hide from human bosses….hahaha. But if you work as if God is your Boss, your will work more diligently and with integrity. Even though He is not a harsh and mean Boss like a few of the human bosses that may you have experienced in real life, how many of us know that God watches us all the time? Hahaha. And that’s the beauty of it; since He sees everything on our behalf, He can protect us from devours, keep and fortify everything concern us. The Bible says God, He Who watches over us, never sleeps nor slumber (Psalm 121:4).
When God is our Boss, there is no hiding. We might as well come forth true to Him each time when we become lazy; “LORD, I just felt lazy yesterday, that’s why I didn’t get anything productive done.” Hahaha. But also we can pray to Him. “Oh LORD help us; we want to be diligent and improve, Your Word says You order the steps of the godly, please order our steps and strengthen us so that we can work harder like Apostle Paul by Your grace. In Jesus’ Mighty Name. Amen.”
There is a story called “The Parable of the Shrewd Manager” that the Lord Jesus shared in the Bible in the book of Luke chapter 16 from verses 1 to 15. And it says that “Jesus told his disciples: “Jesus told this story to his disciples: “There was a certain rich man who had a manager handling his affairs. One day a report came that the manager was wasting his employer’s money. So the employer called him in and said, ‘What’s this I hear about you? Get your report in order, because you are going to be fired.’ “The manager thought to himself, ‘Now what? My boss has fired me. I don’t have the strength to dig ditches, and I’m too proud to beg. Ah, I know how to ensure that I’ll have plenty of friends who will give me a home when I am fired.’ “So he invited each person who owed money to his employer to come and discuss the situation. He asked the first one, ‘How much do you owe him?’ The man replied, ‘I owe him 800 gallons of olive oil.’ So the manager told him, ‘Take the bill and quickly change it to 400 gallons.’ “‘And how much do you owe my employer?’ he asked the next man. ‘I owe him 1,000 bushels of wheat,’ was the reply. ‘Here,’ the manager said, ‘take the bill and change it to 800 bushels.’ “The rich man had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light. Here’s the lesson: Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home. “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own? “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.” The Pharisees, who dearly loved their money, heard all this and scoffed at Him. 15 Then he said to them, “You like to appear righteous in public, but God knows your hearts. What this world honors is detestable in the sight of God.”
In case you didn’t know; true promotion comes from God. It is God that lifts people’s heads. In the book of Psalm chapter 75 verses 6 to 7, in Amplified Bible Version it says “For not from the east, nor from the west, nor from the desert comes exaltation. But God is the Judge; He puts down one and lifts up another.”
So the Lord Jesus said “If we are faithful in little things, we will be faithful in large ones. But if we are dishonest in little things, we won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” And then He asked, “And if we are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust us with the true riches of heaven? And if we are not faithful with other people’s things, why should we be trusted with things of our own?”
We should seek the praises of God, and not the praises of our fellow men. We should seek to please God and be approved by Him, and not by our fellow humans.
The Bible also says one among many things that can make you stand before kings is diligence. In the book of Proverbs chapter 22 verses 29, it says “Show me someone who does a good job, and I will show you someone who is better than most and worthy of the company of kings.” In another translation, it says “Observe people who are good at their work—skilled workers are always in demand and admired; they don’t take a backseat to anyone.”
In fact statistics say that it takes an average of five years to become professional in your specific field that you do. For instance; if you start a new career today and dedicating yourself to become better every day or every week, in five years it is said you can be one of the top leaders in your field.
Many skills can be learn-able. Many talents and gifts can be improved and sharpened. But remember, it is a diligent man who will stand before kings. So have patience and be persistent, and work diligently.
Helen Majaga is a founder of Helen Majaga International, Live to Your Full Potential Podcast & YouCount Magazine, specializing in the training and development of individuals and businesses to achieve personal and professional goals.
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