The Rewards of Hard Work

"Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time." Proverbs 13:11 NLT

Get rich quick schemes.  Everyone can tell you a story about one. While they started long before 1920, it was Charles Ponzi who carried out his notorious deceptions, and became the namesake for many of today's schemes. There was Bernie Madoff, Thomas Petters, Alan Stanford, and just last year another 60 discovered incidents of Ponzi schemes. In an age where"faster is better", many have compromised their integrity to satisfy their desires.

One such person was Whitey Bulger who turned to organized crime to gain his fortunes.  He reflect back to his actions; "My life was wasted and spent foolishly, brought shame + suffering on my parents and siblings and will end soon -- Advice is a cheap commodity some seek it from me about crime -- I know only one thing for sure -- If you want to make crime pay -- 'Go to Law School.'" 

While riches from schemes quickly disappears, wealth from hard work grows over time. In other devotions, we have discussed the value of hard work, but I want to focus in on the main difference in this passage of scripture: time.  Quick vs. over time. Something happens with the passage of time while doing hard work; character develops.

"A dream does not become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work." ~ Colin Powell, former U.S. Defense Secretary

Just a quick study of those who have found "instant wealth" will illustrate that the vast majority of them, at best lost their fortunes, and occasionally had their lives ruined.  It has been wisely suggested: "Don't allow your talent to take you where your character can't keep you."

By working hard over time you will gain the character to match the provision. As Zechariah did so long ago, I want to encourage you in your work even though it may seem small now.

"Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin."  Zechariah 4:10 NLT

The Lord rejoices in honest work done faithfully.  This week focus on putting the time in, work hard, and experience the growth of both character and resources.

In His Hands,

John

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