Proverbs 14:23 says: “In all labor there is profit, But idle chatter leads only to poverty.”
I LOVE proverbs. I have been reading a chapter of proverbs most every day since March of 1991. Each chapter is packed with wisdom that upon reflection can help improve the quality of your life and everyone around you. It’s amazing to me how each day I read a chapter and something stands out to me as if I never read it before. This particular verse is simple on the surface, but has many deeper meanings.
The “idle chatter leads to poverty” part I think is pretty easy to understand. People who talk about doing, but don’t do, will lead an impoverished life. But not just financially. Poverty isn’t just about money…just like starvation doesn’t just have to be about food. When someone spends their life talking and watching, they are not participating in the actual experience. This is with anything from work, to a business, to an idea, to a relationship. Anything and everything in life. The richness in life is found in the involvement and the experience, both the positive experiences and the painful ones.
The richness in life is found in the involvement and the experience, both the positive experiences and the painful ones.
The first part of the verse is a real beauty if you dig deeper. You could say that maybe there is not profit in all labor, if we work at something and don’t gain financially from it. If this is your view point, you are too close to the surface. All labor has multiple profit for the doer. Laboring or toiling at any endeavor feels good at the end of the day. A day of hard work, even if the progress was indistinguishable, is satisfying to the soul. It contains the richness of self-worth. It sews the seeds of new learning in our work. It always brings us closer to becoming a better person. And it will always, with diligent pursuit, eventually lead to financial gain if that is part of the purpose.
A day of hard work, even if the progress was indistinguishable, is satisfying to the soul.
The best labor? A labor of love. Confucius said “do what you love and you will never work a day in your life.” I believe what he meant, was that while you will labor long and diligently, it will bring you so much joy and fulfillment that you won’t associate this with feeling like work. This doesn’t mean there won’t be times of struggle or doubt, because those exist in everything in life that also isn’t work, it just means it won’t feel like a burden to do what you do. Take it from me, it is an awesome feeling to wake up in the morning and be diligent doing things you want to be doing….like helping others live a better life.
It also does not mean that you will love every part of the labor. There will always be aspects of anything you do that are not enjoyable. There will also be times, that while you are loving the thing, that it’s not going very well. You won’t like this either. All things of value have as much or more times of difficulty as there are times of joy. Consider farming for a second. There is joy in all parts of the work, because it feels good to work hard. But much of the season is the work without the end result, and often is tedious. The harvest happens long after the arduous work of preparing the soil.
The Mindset Has to Be That You Will Toil Diligently
Not when you feel like it.
Not when the conditions are right.
Not when you are ready.
You will toil diligently KNOWING this is the key. This means you have to win the battle of the mind. You have to recognize that the obstacles externally can always be worked around if you win the battle internally.
This is about overcoming fears, frustrations, doubts, discomfort, anxiety. Feeling them, acknowledging them, and moving forward in the face of them. You have to work at this. If you haven’t downloaded your free MP3 “Overcoming Your Four Barriers to Success” Click here.
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Many Blessings, Todd
P.S. If you are considering a coach to help you move forward shoot me an email and we can talk about it.
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