I could see it in the other students’ eyes. Envy. Not the green-eyed monster kind of envy, but the respectful admiration they hoped to earn one day.
We, the graduating class of Slidell High, were lining up in the school’s main hallway to practice for graduation – the big event we thought would never come. Noticing the admiring looks from our lower classmates, we enjoyed the satisfaction our perseverance had earned.
Had we not persisted in studying and doing our homework (even when we didn’t feel like it), we’d have missed that enviable pride and satisfaction that comes with dedication and hard work.
In the years since, I wonder how many of my fellow graduates share my frustration for the times we haven’t practiced that same perseverance. For the times we’ve allowed procrastination to steal other milestones we could have experienced.
But it’s not too late.
And it’s not too late for you, either.
What if we recall the gratifying feelings we experienced every time we accomplished a goal and allow those memories to help us become more disciplined and focused?
How would it rekindle our zest for life if we asked God to show us the plans we’ve given up on – or plans He still has for us?
How fulfilling would it be to finally get your GED, apply for that promotion, start your own business or ministry, dust off the book manuscript you’ve yet to finish?
When we live productive lives, we have sweeter days – and better lives. Read Psalm 128: 2 (ESV):
You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands; you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.
How about it?
- Have you gotten off-track regarding something God put on your heart?
- What about that dream that used to keep you up at night with excitement?
- What goal have you put aside that, with prayer and focus, you could once again begin working toward?
Wouldn’t now be a great time to seek God about it?
Or maybe you’d like to explore another dream you’ve been mulling over.
Perhaps finding an accountability partner to help you stay focused would be an effective first step. As we trust God in our labor, there’s something about the respect and admiration we receive from others that’s healthy and motivating. Enviable, even.
More importantly, the self-respect we earn at the end of the day will make our efforts worthwhile and our lives sweeter.
Yet … the greatest reward for living life well … will be sensing the proud smile of our heavenly Father cheering for His child.
What about you?
I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post. (Others might also benefit from your comment.)
- How would you answer the questions listed under “How about it?” in this post?
- What do you think about the last line of this post? (What feelings does it stir within you?):
“Yet … the greatest reward for living life well … will be sensing the proud smile of our heavenly Father cheering for His child.”
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