Hard work always counts for something. If you work hard at anything, good will come out of it. If you work hard at grades in school, your efforts will be rewarded. Even if it’s not an A+ you can know that you did your best. If you work hard at work, no one may notice, or someone else might take credit for your hard work. But you know the truth. And God knows! You became stronger by putting in that effort. Whatever it was, you worked hard. The effort is what counts. In Colossians 3:23-24 Paul tells us:
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”
I ran a marathon. I trained hard and long to run that 26.2 mile race. I had blisters on top of blisters. I had aches and pains in muscles I didn’t even know I had. I didn’t finish that marathon. I made it to mile 23. Many runners were pulled from the race because of the heat. I was dizzy and running at an angle by the time they pulled me off the course. Did I fail? Sure, if you only look at the finish line.
Did I succeed? Yes, I believe I did. Simply by putting in the hard work and trying, I succeeded. I gave that crazy race everything I had. My hard work paid off because I was prepared and in the best shape of my life. I learned so much about myself and what I could accomplish simply by training for that race.
Do I wish I had crossed that finish line? Yes. But, I’m grateful for the work I put in to prepare for that race. Pushing my body to new limits was hard but I’m really glad I did it.
I worked hard. The effort is what counts. My hard work did pay off, not with a finisher’s medal but with the satisfaction that I tried. Man, did I try hard. God and I had some really great talks over those miles and miles of training.
Whatever is in front of you today, work hard at it. Give it your full attention and effort. Work at it as working for the Lord. Give Him the glory!