January 2016 (8)Ecclesiastes 4:4-6

4 I also noticed that every project worked on, and every expertise gained by working comes from a man’s envy of his neighbour. Even this also is transient and a striving after wind. 5 The stupid one folds his hands and ends up eating his own flesh. 6 But even a handful gained in peace is better than two hands full gained by hard work and striving after wind.


The collector examined the motivation behind the great scientific and industrial progress that his society has known. He, himself had been both the mastermind and the taskmaster of that great progress. Yet, when he examined the motivation behind it, he found a moral failure. The work had been driven by selfish ambition and envy. The workers had been forced to build monuments to pride that – in the end – would be found to be just air. They had worked hard at gaining something that could not be kept.

What motivates your work? Unless your work is for the glory of God and the advancement of his kingdom, your motivation is misplaced. Don’t do a lifetime of good things for the wrong reason. Live like an artist, not an athlete – even if you are an athlete!

LORD, focus our efforts on living a life that reflects you, not a life that just tries to be better than others.

About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is a former Christian missionary and a candidate for pastoral ministry. You can contact him at -- !
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