Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Developing Christlike Attributes: Diligence

One of the greatest football coaches in history once said, "The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary." Diligence is the principle that drives us to be better, and to work hard for the things that we want to accomplish. It is the steady, consistent, and energetic effort in doing the Lord's work. If we want reap success from the work each of us are involved in, we must be diligent.

Rick Hoyt was born in 1962 to Dick and Judy Hoyt. Rick was diagnosed as a spastic quadriplegic  with cerebral palsy at birth as a result from oxygen deprivation . Dick and Judy were advised to institutionalize Rick because there was no hope of him recovering and living a normal life. The quest then began to help Rick become involved in the community, sports, and education.

In the spring of 1977, Rick told his father that he wanted to participate in a 5-mile benefit run for a Lacrosse player who had been paralyzed in an accident. Far from being a long-distance runner, Dick agreed to push Rick in his wheelchair and they finished all 5 miles, coming in next to last. That night, Rick told his father, "Dad, when I'm running, it feels like I'm not handicapped."

This realization was just the beginning of what would become over 1,000 races completed, including marathons, duathlons and triathlons (6 of them being Ironman competitions). Also adding to their list of achievements, Dick and Rick biked and ran across the U.S. in 1992, completing a full 3,735 miles in 45 days(Team Hoyt)

Just as Dick's diligence is an expression of love to his son. Our diligence is an expression of love to our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. Pushing forward when we are tired, and living the commandments of the Lord when don't think we can is a great sign of faith.

Through exercising diligence we become more like our savior who was the ultimate example of diligence. He completed his mission on this earth even though he knew that the path he would have to walk would be a long and painful one. When he was about to endure the greatest pain the world has ever known and he said to his father, "..take away this cup from me, nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." (Mark 14:36)  He knew of his divinity and knew the diligence it would take to accomplish the task that was at hand. Yet, he laid the example before us and fulfilled the will of the father by atoning for the sins of the world.

As we press forward with all energy of our hearts, striving to become more like our savior everyday, the love our our Father in Heaven will be manifest through us. We will find that the Lord will make more out of us that we can make out of ourselves. It's not easy, it takes work, but all things are possible through Christ who strengthens us.

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