July 4, 2016

“Work brings profit, but mere talk leads to poverty.”
– Proverbs 14:23 (New Living Translation)

What does it take to be great?  Is there one secret that allowed Ted Williams to become baseball’s greatest hitter? What was it that allowed Hank Aaron to be the most consistent home run hitter of his era?  Did Nolan Ryan, the record holder for career strikeouts, know something that other pitchers didn’t?  Some would argue that you’re either born with talent or you aren’t.  Others say that greatness is the result of years of hard and painful work.  Williams, Aaron, and Ryan were certainly gifted athletes, but let’s not forget the countless hours of practice they put in over their careers.

Legendary coach John Wooden is quoted as saying, “You must believe in yourself, but you can’t do that if you aren’t prepared.” 

Whether it’s sports, business, music or math, evidence indicates that greatness isn’t something we’re born with, but rather something that’s attained through the process of deliberate practice and hard work.

The Bible indicates that God intended us to work.  Work is good and should bring fulfillment and satisfaction to our lives.  Without hard work, our lives would be shallow and out of balance.  Hard workers are well-known by those around them.  They have good reputations.  We all have choices to make.  We can settle for average, or we can kick it up another gear.  What we make of our lives will be largely determined by our drive and determination. Will we have put in the hard work and practice when our opportunity comes?  God’s message to us is this—in the end hard work pays!

Lord, You made me and You know what’s best for me.  Teach me the value of hard work.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

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