“Whatever you do, work at it wholeheartedly as though you were doing it for the Lord and not merely for people.”
Have you ever given something a half-hearted effort, but expected wholehearted results? I recently came across a quote from Michael Jordan that caught my attention. He once said, “I’ve always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don’t do things half-heartedly. Because I know if I do, then I can expect half-hearted results.” His words reminded me of an experience I had with my boys this past Fall.
As summer drew to a close we added a trampoline to the backyard. Loving the new toy, our boys spent every minute possible jumping and flipping before we had to take it down for the winter. One afternoon, while jumping with my boys, I couldn’t help but notice how easily they successfully completed every flip and outlandish jump they attempted. While I thoroughly enjoyed bouncing with them and making up silly moves, when it came to any kind of flip or jump that required actual skill, I was a total failure. Why? Quite simply it was because I approached my attempts with a half-hearted effort. In the back of my mind I was already thinking I couldn’t do it, that I would probably break my neck or kill myself if I put in any real effort, so in the end I got what I put into it – a half-hearted result.
While giving a half-hearted effort and consequently receiving a half-hearted result is not exactly serious when it comes to stunts on a trampoline, the stakes are much higher in other areas of life. When we give a half-hearted effort in regard to healthy living, our relationships, work, etc. the results can have life altering consequences.
So, why do I write about this today? Why is discussing giving only a half-hearted effort so important? Because as we head into the new year, most of us have goals and dreams we want to accomplish over the coming year. In my post last week, What One Thing Would Make 2017 Your Best Year Yet? (which I highly recommend you check out if you have not yet read it), I challenged readers to name one thing, one goal that would make 2017 their best year yet. However, we need to realize if we only give our goals and dreams a half-hearted effort, we will only get half-hearted results. If we don’t commit to give a wholehearted effort, we set ourselves up for failure before we even begin.
More so, when we only give a half-hearted effort, we are often tempted to blame the lackluster results on God. We give our new diet and exercise program half-hearted effort and then lacking the results we hoped for rationalize God created us to be on the heavier side. We only give the relationships around us half-hearted effort and then conclude God must intend for us to form new relationships because ones with those around us have been unsuccessful. We give the seemingly small things at work half-hearted effort and then decide it’s just not God’s will for us to be promoted.
While God is sovereign and can certainly work out all things for our good, may we never rationalize that our half-hearted effort is God’s best for our life. Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work at it wholeheartedly as though you were doing it for the Lord and not merely for people.”
What about you? Are you willing to commit right now to approach your goals and dreams for 2017 wholeheartedly? Like Michael Jordan, I too believe if you put in the work, the results will come. Don’t set yourself up for failure, purpose to work wholeheartedly as though you were doing it for the Lord and not merely for people.
How are you going to put in wholehearted effort today?