The Importance Of Being Earnest
To practice five things under all circumstances constitutes perfect virtue; these five are gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness.
Now you might just think that by today’s title, I am referring to Oscar Wilde’s “trivial comedy for serious people” (a), where people donned false personae to escape the tedium of their lives! But I’m not! What I am talking about is the manner with which we each should be focusing not just our attentions but our intentions on what we hope life will gift us with as we travel through it!
1. serious in intention, purpose, or effort; sincerely zealous: an earnest worker.
2. showing depth and sincerity of feeling: earnest words; an earnest entreaty.
3. seriously important; demanding or receiving serious attention.
How many times have you promised yourself that today is the day I effect the change I need to make in order to live not just a happier, but a more fulfilled life, as well? We usually believe that we know what it is that we must do and usually the route we need to use to accomplish our ends is clearly defined. And yet, even having the means, somehow we do not seem to be able to accomplish our ends! And sometimes, we actually arrive at our goals only to discover that we are not as happy as we thought we would be!
Have you ever heard the phrase, “It’s more than working hard……it’s working smart”? Well, working smart, I believe, is being earnest in the way you seek the things you not just want but need in life. It is not enough to say that you have faith and believe, just because you attend church or celebrate the holy days of the Christian calendar. All this proves is that you are faithful to your church. This does not prove your faithfulness to Christ! Actually this does not prove that you have faith, at all!
We are all products of a challenging time in history! We live in times that typifies man’s deceitful side. In fact, it is this deceit, much like Wilde’s cast of characters, that governs the lives of most people. We are content to put on our blinders, look straight ahead and walk along the straight and narrow path. We may be traveling a route that helps us to reach what we hope will be our ends and our goals in life. However, just how much of life’s beauty and “must sees” do we miss because we do not bother to look on both sides of the road as we travel? How often do we each miss out on life’s opportunities and gifts by being so completely focused on the end that we believe is the right one? And are we being earnest in our quest? Well, there probably is not a yes or no answer to this. Yes, we are earnestly seeking something but is it the thing we should be trying to find?
Since you excel in so many ways–in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us–I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving.
2 Corinthians 8:7 NLT
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