Work ethic. It’s a term we hear about regularly, but do we really know what it means? And maybe a better question for Christians, does God define work ethic in the Bible? What is God’s work ethic?

These thoughts occurred to me today while sitting at my desk trying to focus on my TODO list. I’m a list guy. Lists help me focus, and accomplish the most important things each week. Not that I always follow my lists, but I do make them and that has to count for something!

But making lists is tricky because as soon as you finish – BOOM! – distraction number one pops up in your email. It’s a YouTube video called “Fail Blog,” which your friend describes as HILARIOUS and SHORT! You think to yourself, “I have a minute to check that out.” Before you know it, 4 videos, 5 movie trailers, and 30 minutes have gone by, and you’ve accomplished nothing. So you try to get back to your list. BOOM! Distraction number two, then three, then four…

It’s almost like there are two Daniel’s in my head. One is telling me to focus and get things done. The other Daniel loves to party and have a good time! And the two voices love to argue. Here’s an honest progression of their argument this morning:

Daniel 1: “Time to get going. What is number one on the list?”

Daniel 2: “Before you check out the list, did you check the results of the NFL draft?”

Daniel 1: “I checked them on Sunday.”

Daniel 2: “Are you sure you’ve seen all the results? And what if the Panther’s signed a free agent this morning?”

Daniel 1: “It’s Monday morning at 8am. No one signs a free agent before 8am on Monday morning.”

Daniel 2: “Whatever. You’re probably missing out on the biggest break your favorite team has ever had.”

Daniel 1: “Okay. I’ll check. But only for a moment.”

(I type in ESPN)

Daniel 2: “Oh LOOK! The NBA playoffs are happening. Did you check to see who won?”

Daniel 1: “Nope. But I can check later.”

Daniel 2: “Okay. If you want to miss out on history.”

Daniel 1: “Okay. But just a quick peek.”

Daniel 2: “Look at the right side of the screen. It’s a quick recap of all the games you missed this weekend. It’s only 6 minutes long. Doesn’t your boss give you a 15 minute break during the day? Use 6 minutes and get caught up on the playoffs.”

(I click on the video, which ends with the question: What is going to happen in LA during the off-season. Click here to learn more. I click. 15 minutes go by.)

Daniel 1: “Oh man! 15 minutes gone. I better get to work.”

Daniel 2: “But you haven’t checked the news yet. What if there was another bombing? What if the president was assassinated? What if congress did something stupid?”

Daniel 1: “I’ll check at lunchtime.”

Daniel 2: “Just check real quick. It will only take a minute.”

Daniel 1: “Congress does occasionally do stupid stuff.”

(I type CNN.COM.)

Daniel 2: “Oh look! A funny video of a girl apologizing to her wisdom teeth for having them taken out of her mouth!”

(I watch the video.)

Daniel 2: “This is hilarious! You should post this on Facebook!”

Daniel 1: “Okay.”

Daniel 2: “Oh look! Your news feed! I wonder what other people are up to today?”

(A lot of time passes.)

Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever began your day intending to get a lot done, and yet arrived at the end of the day without accomplishing anything? This never happens to me. I just thought you might struggle with it.

Ironically, I just wrote an entire post about distractions which distracted me from what I intended on writing about today! I guess “God’s Work Ethic” will have to wait until the next blog post.

What kinds of distractions do you deal with? How have you been able to minimize distractions and focus on what needs to be done? Comment below and continue the discussion…


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