Have you lived long enough to know the value of patience and perseverance? Do you believe that the good stuff in life comes only through endurance and long-suffering?
We like the story of the Tortoise and the Hare because in the end the improbable happens…the tortoise wins!
The slow unimpressive turtle won against a much quicker, more impressive opponent rabbit. He didn’t win because he was slow or because he was entitled to win. He endured, didn’t quit and eventually crossed the finish line…in first place. He won because he applied the principle of steady plodding.
Leaders generally agree with the importance of persistence and grit. Yet how often have you looked for another way? Is there another way? Of course there is. There is the way of the Hare! However…
Wisdom teaches us, “Easy come, easy go, but steady diligence pays off.” (Pr 13:11, The Message). While the principle of steady plodding applies to all of life the context uses wealth to illustrate. This is more obvious in the NIV: “Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.”
Little by little? Frankly I would prefer “a bunch by a bunch.” What about you? However much you may prefer quick growth, the change that is produced usually isn’t sustainable. The tortoise won because he used the principle of steady plodding and because the hare loses focus and interest.
Did the hare want to win? Of course he did! Everyone wants to win. But because he was fast he knew he could easily win. So he started out fast and impressive but soon grew tired. He could not sustain the pace. Not true with the turtle. Mr. turtle started out at a speed that was sustainable and simply didn’t stop walking.
Where have you behaved like the hare? Where would you like to be more like the tortoise? Do you have areas of life where you would like to win? Your health? Your money? Your energy level? Your friendships? Your marriage? Your children? Your spiritual life? Your education? May I suggest that you pick a direction and start walking!
Take a life lesson from Solomon: “…steady diligence pays off.”