Hidden Nuggets Series #87 – “Also to you, O Lord, belongs mercy; for you render to each one according to his work.” – Psalm 62:12
In my teaching days I’d often hear moans and groans coming from students when they learned of their failure on a test. What usually followed their whimpers of dissatisfaction was a litany of excuses as to why they did so poorly.
“I had a ballgame last night.”
“My little brother wouldn’t leave me alone.”
My favorite complaint was this one, “But I did study!” to which I’d respond by saying, “How long?”
“30 minutes while I was watching TV” (or something like that was the typical response).
I worked in a Christian school so it was typical for us to pray during the day. I always prayed before tests just to calm the atmosphere and help kids get their mind focused.
As I began to put two and two together – lack of study time translating into poor grades (and then subsequent griping about said grade) – I decided to set the tone in my prayer for what the students could reasonable expect to happen based on their study patterns. So at the end of my prayer, I’d be sure to say something like this…
“…and may every student be rewarded based on the level of work they’ve put in. Amen.”
Your Work Renders Your Own Results
The Bible says in Psalm 62:12 that God renders (gives, provides, supplies) to each of us according to our own work. It doesn’t say what He gives whether that’s money, daily provision, authority, friendships or whatever. The implication though is that it’s something we deserve.
And that “something we deserve” centers on our work.
It’s easy to point fingers when things don’t go our way. We find anything and everything to blame for not achieving what we want. Rare is the person who points inward and says, “That’s all on me…it was my fault.”
This verse speaks to the heart of our blame-shifting mindset. As we see the outcome of our effort is…
- Based on the level of work we put in and it’s…
- Based on my work, not the work of someone else.
So I can’t look outward and say, “I didn’t achieve because of the work you are doing!”
The blame for failure rests with me. It results from my inability to pursue tasks with the necessary fervor.
“But I Worked Hard and It Still Fell Apart”
Will there be circumstances where you are putting in maximum effort and situations don’t work out how you planned?
You can’t account for what others in the company are doing that may cause it to falter.
You can’t win if other key members of the team aren’t putting in the same effort.
You can’t anticipate what unforeseen events might come your way or that someone might simply be better than you.
But this is an undeniable truth no matter what circumstance you find yourself in…you can’t succeed if you are putting in minimal effort to just slide by.
Your work ethic is the key, determining factor in being given what you deserve.
You can’t expect to reach great heights without being willing to do the climbing.
Questions: How have you seen your dedication to work pay off – either in a negative or positive way? Do you routinely blame people or circumstances for why you fail? Do you feel others are holding you back?