Dictionary.com's definition of “diligence” –
1. Constant and earnest effort to accomplish what is undertaken; persistent exertion of body or mind.
2. Law. the degree of care and caution required by the circumstances of a person.
3. Obsolete. care; caution.
Diligence is important because it is what keeps us moving forward for a specific purpose. Not in a hasty or half hazard way, but in a slow, careful and thoughtful way. Having diligence is what will keep us on the narrow path despite its pitfalls.
What aspects of a person can influence their diligence? One's love for Father. The inner want or need to be righteous in Father's eyes rather than in one's own estimation. The understanding of what is righteous or, right and wrong. The knowledge, understanding and wisdom that is shared with us as to why it must be a Father's way and why no other way will work.
You cannot sit back and just learn via osmosis. It takes diligence to want to learn and to actively participate in what is being taught. By remaining focused, one maintains constant and consistent diligence. Through understanding WHY it is important that we learn as much as we possibly can and that we accept what is so generously offered but then take it one step further and independently seeking Father and Her will through study and meditation.
When you think about the daily activities in one’s life that require solid diligence, they might include things as simple as getting up and going to work each day. We do it because we have to survive and in order to survive we have to make money. In the same aspect, we should diligently seek wisdom and understanding because they are the way to eternal life – which is even more precious than the one we are currently living.
Diligence shows commitment, obedience, loyalty, faith, love…it can also show spiritual maturity. Anyone who has faithfully and obediently served Father has shown great diligence. This includes those we read about in the Scriptures as well as anyone throughout the years who has been a footstep follower of Christ as that was their purpose. At all times their eyes were focused on Father’s will. Symbolically, the cross, as an inanimate object, symbolizes diligence as the completion of what was set out to do. Father is the most supreme example of diligence because She is always working. If at any point Father were to stop Her work we would be out of existence.
Joshua 23:11 – “So be very diligent to love the LORD your God for your own well-being.”
In regards to the above Scripture, love shows devotion, loyalty, obedience, faith and trust. In this scripture, love’s characteristic is understanding and wisdom. Having love for Father is placing Father’s needs above our own and love Her with our heart, soul, mind and strength we know that She’ll take care of us. It’s along the same lines as serving one another. Our well-being is Father’s well-being because we live within Her and because of Her. While She can exist without us – but we cannot exist without Her.
So what in one’s daily walk can be done to remain diligent in loving Father? Remain focused. Remember what we’re working towards and for whom. Keep out that which would deter our focus. “Batten down the hatches” and do not allow that which is evil or negative to enter our minds and filter down into our hearts and above all else in all we do, do it in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Deuteronomy 4:9 – “Only be on your guard and diligently watch yourselves, so that you don't forget the things your eyes have seen and so that they don't slip from your mind as long as you live. Teach them to your children and your grandchildren.”
”To diligently love Father and to diligently watch ourselves” – to me this means to love Father and one another, which is the single most important commandment. And, just as we have been taught by Father, Father asks that we teach our children and grandchildren, so that Her creation can continue per Her will and as She commands for all of eternity.
Psalm 119:4 – “You have commanded that Your precepts be diligently kept.”
Proverbs 10:4 – “Idle hands make one poor, but diligent hands bring riches.”
Proverbs 12:24 – “The diligent hand will rule, but laziness will lead to forced labor.”
Proverbs 12:27 – “A lazy man doesn't roast his game, but to a diligent man, his wealth is precious.”
Proverbs 13:4 – “The slacker craves, yet has nothing, but the diligent is fully satisfied.”
All four of the above Scriptures speak of the idle/lazy/slacker and the diligent person and the differences between them and the fruit they bear. I believe that they speak of what comes to those who keep Father’s commands. How through our own diligence we acquire knowledge, understanding and wisdom, which are worth more than gold and silver – and which will bring the richness and wealth of a healthy and satisfied spirit. However, it takes diligence in order to obtain anything worthwhile in life – spiritual or otherwise.
While it is easy to acquire knowledge, obtaining understanding and wisdom takes preparation, so that the nourishment and subsequent nutrition is properly attained by the spiritual body. Likewise, wisdom does not come without prayer and meditation and full nourishment cannot be obtained without it. Father’s Holy Spirit contains the wisdom which is the breath of life by which we all live. Her Holy Spirit is the very essence by which we live our physical lives and by which we may attain eternal life.
So why is it that diligence is important in keeping Father’s ordinances and commands? The answer is simple. If you’re lacking in diligence, you may also be lacking in endurance. It’s also important in regards to respect to Father. As I mentioned earlier in this article, wisdom cannot be obtained via osmosis. Simply reading the scriptures does not bring true understanding. You can absorb the words but not their meanings – which is why we must also make use of the tools available to us in order to fully understand, like prayer, meditation, our dictionaries, Bibles and even encyclopedias. It’s the diligence of taking the time to commit yourself fully to learning that brings knowledge. We are taught this in school. Even the most brilliant minded cannot simply sit in a chair and listen to a lecture and know all there is to know on that subject. Even that person must take what they have learned and study it further, perform homework lessons, write essays, and put into action what they have learned. Some people are able to memorize Scriptures word for word like they would their multiplication tables, but does that mean they understand how they derived the answer? It takes diligence to pursue understanding and wisdom and the importance of following Father’s ordinances and commands. Nothing worthwhile is easy. It takes work, dedication, diligence and much effort and willingness of spirit to want to grow spiritually and learn Father’s Way and adhere to Her precepts.
2 Timothy 2:15 – “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who doesn't need to be ashamed, correctly teaching the word of truth.”
We must each learn to take on the attitudes and characteristics of “a worker who doesn’t need to be ashamed”. One of humility, obedience, integrity, faith, loyalty and love. One who is a footstep follower of Christ. One who has an attitude of a good-for-nothing slave who is inexperienced and therefore cannot lean on their own understanding but approaches Father in all things for Her understanding and wisdom. One who seeks to please Father rather than man. And in doing so, we remain diligent in our love for Father just as She remains diligent in Her love for us.