Working through Proverbs: The Wise Worker is Diligent

by Ben Bowden, Marketing Assistant

This is the second blog post in a series that goes through The Bible and Your Work study Series focusing on the book of Proverbs. After reading, feel free to comment below. And in case you missed it, here is the link to the first post.

Diligence is one of those words that I don’t use often enough. defines “diligent” as: “constant in effort to accomplish something; attentive and persistent in doing anything.” When am I ever constant in effort? I often put in the work necessary as opposed to the work that’s expected. However, Christians are called to be diligent in their work at all times. That’s a tough goal to reach.

9781619705241The Wise Woman from Proverbs 31 works with “willing hands” (NRSV), or in the NIV, “eager hands.” She is not upset about going to work but is genuinely excited about it. She doesn’t wake up each morning with a begrudging sigh saying, “I have to go to work.” And if she does, she doesn’t let those thoughts take control. To her work is not something she has to do, but rather something she gets to do. Working with willing hands means having an eagerness about work. Not necessarily the same excitement felt while waiting for Star Wars VII to begin, but an eager spirit to do the work that God has called me to.

This chapter cited businessman Dale Crownover as a proponent of faithful hard work. Crownover, whose story you can see here, challenges us by saying, “at some point you have to quit praying and go to work. I’m all for praying, but God wants you to go out and get to work doing all this.” This reminds me of Ben Franklin’s famous quote, “God helps those who help themselves.” At the Great Commission, Jesus told us to “Go…” He wants us to move to action to accomplish His will. But we can’t do it half-heartedly. We need to be diligent and hardworking. Crownover’s guiding verse is reassuring: “But you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded” (2 Chr.15:7).

Three key takeaways I learned from chapter three of this book:

  1. I should be willing to work and do what God has for me.
  2. My work should add something of value to my employer and God’s overall plan.
  3. I need to be fully invested in my work, not going into it reluctantly.

If you haven’t yet, feel free to join me in this study series from the Theology of Work Project. Follow along in your own copy of The Bible and Your Work Study Series: Proverbs or by reading and commenting on these posts. Either way, I look forward to continuing on this journey with you and hope we can learn from each other.

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