He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread,
But he who follows frivolity is devoid of understanding. (
In all labor there is profit,
But idle chatter leads only to poverty. (
We are saved by grace, apart from works, but the grace that saves us works in us to produce work through us. Grace is the fruit of my life, but works are the fruit of that grace. We work out what God works in. If we are not diligent, disciplined and determined in our efforts, we will not be successful in our service. You will never be productive in any realm of life by merely day-dreaming—you must flesh out dreams with deeds! We may wish for better days, but will never see them until we work in better ways. Big talk breeds poverty, while a better walk brings prosperity. The wisdom of God found in the words of Solomon makes this plain. The afore-mentioned verses are only a sample of much Scripture found in Proverbs on the subject of industry.
Two old sayings are, “You get what you pay for” and “talk is cheap.” Someone has said, “When all is said and done, there is more said than done!” Dreams and schemes accompanied by hesitation and procrastination are inexpensive at first, but will be costly in the extreme down the road. It is like neglecting maintenance on your car or house and ultimately receiving a bill for a major repair later that was avoidable by vigilance and diligence in the smaller things today. Doing the right thing will cost you in the present, but it is not to be seen as a loss, but an investment that pays rich dividends in the future.
No man was more committed to grace than the Apostle Paul, yet no one was more constant in good works than he was! “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” (
Corinthians 15:10) He would
go on to issue this challenge to us, “Therefore,
my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of
the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” (v.58) Paul
defended the Gospel wholeheartedly, but was devoted to good works
continually. He would uncompromising
toward any who would subvert the truth that faith in Christ alone saves us, but
was unrelenting in calling for an enthusiastic effort in response to that
doctrine. In his own life, he was unwavering
in his passion and unstoppable in his pursuit of the prize of the high calling
of God in Christ Jesus.
The sacrifice of Jesus calls us to give our all on the altar in response. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” (
12:1). In the words of the
old hymn, “Jesus paid it all; all to Him I owe.” Now, GET BUSY!