Session 22

Are you willing to work for it?

From Genesis: A 7-Week Devotional


Genesis 29

With the touch of a button, we can tweet, post, access, purchase, communicate, and create.

We can say what we want when we want and buy what we want anytime we want, which sounds great—until we feel the backlash of a careless word or the remorse of a string of impulse purchases.

Hard work and perseverance might seem as outdated as chivalry. But when we work hard and wait for the results, we experience fewer regrets.

In Genesis 29, Jacob was willing to work and wait for Rachel. The 14 years Jacob worked to marry Rachel showed how much he valued her. Those years were not marked by drudgery. They "seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her" (Genesis 29:20). Jacob had no regrets. He cherished Rachel all his life.

the degree of our effort demonstrates the depth of our interest

Contrast Jacob and Rachel's love story with the relationship between Amnon and Tamar in 2 Samuel 13. Amnon fell in love with Tamar, but he neither wanted to work nor wait to marry her. He conspired with a friend, deceived his father, and raped Tamar. "Then Amnon hated her with an intense hatred. In fact, he hated her more than he loved her" (2 Samuel 13:15). Amnon felt immediate and intense regret.

In all areas of our lives—our relationships, our money, our careers—the degree of our effort demonstrates the depth of our interest.

All hard work yields a profit, but Proverbs says, “the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied” (Proverbs 13:4, Proverbs 14:23). For some of us, the most loving thing God can do is let us wait so we can learn to work hard and persevere.


  • Is there anything you’re waiting for that seems to be taking too long? How has waiting affected your attitude?
  • How can you guard yourself against impatience in this area?
  • What’s one good thing that comes from not getting what we want immediately?


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