Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth. He who gathers crops in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son. Blessings crown the head of the righteous, but violence overwhelms the mouth of the wicked.
Proverbs 10:4-6 NIV
There is a balance between trusting God to supply for all our needs and working hard to meet them. There is a role that God plays and a part to what we must be involved in. This dichotomy plays itself out in a number of ways in the comparisons between different kinds of people in the Proverbs.
Consider a few of the comparisons in this chapter alone:
The wise vs. the foolish.
The righteous vs. the wicked.
The diligent vs. the lazy.
The prudent vs. the disgraceful.
The disciplined vs. those who ignore correction.
Each of the people listed are rewarded for their character, yet the final word of provision, protection or blessing rests with the Lord. The Psalmist said it this way: "Unless the Lord builds the house, its workers labour in vain" (Psm. 127:1).
When I ask the question, "what does this mean for us as a church or a group of people?" I'm drawn to the New Testament illustration of a body, with each and every part working together - there's a part or a role that each member has to play. Yes, the "building of our house" depends upon the Lord, yet it also depends upon our diligent and disciplined work, as well as making wise and prudent decisions. We all have a role or part to play in ensuring that the blessing of the Lord rests upon us.