Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread,
but he who follows worthless pursuits will have plenty of poverty.
This proverb is about focus and dedication. We do not like doing routine things because they tend to be repetitive, boring, and endless. But it is in the doing of those routine things that we find reward and fulfillment. Maybe you are tired of changing diapers, doing dishes, filing reports, managing a project that changes with each day, or simply working the land. These routine things lead to routine or steady income and are a use and benefit to others, too, as we do them. It is hard to stay focused and dedicated to a project or a ministry for a long period of time—it is not called work for nothing—but the Lord works in the midst of even the tedious sameness and blesses in multiple and surprising ways those who are steadfast.
Worthless pursuits are tempting distractions. They invite you to try something different and are enticing, maybe even spectacular, compared to the boring task in front of you. Maybe it’s an invitation to shop online for that special something you want instead of finishing that Excel spreadsheet. In the end, that pursuit of something better only ends in disappointment.
Jesus was not distracted when Satan tempted him with the glory he could offer. Instead, he faced Jerusalem and focused on the one thing he needed to do—die on the cross for the sins of his people.
We each have our own distractions that may end up being worthless pursuits, but each of us, too, have been given a calling with our related strengths and gifts to use for God’s glory. We should follow Christ’s example and pursue the calling God has given us with diligence.