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Is the virtue of diligence in your character?

Diligence is zealous attention to your actions and work.

It includes a work ethic, punctuality, a wise use of one’s time and a sense of duty. Its synonyms are zeal, attentiveness, work and orderliness. Aristotle indicated that happiness resides in the work of one’s life, and the Bible is well stocked with exhortations to work. Ambition can be a positive virtue as it finds legitimate pride in achievement and motivation in desiring excellence.

Together with diligence, we can think about decency as living in conformity to right standards of purity, cleanliness and dignity. Decency includes the ordering of one’s person, things, speech, sexuality and a right relationship with food and other substances. 

Does this describe you? If so, well done, you are a diligent person.

The opposing vices

The deficiency vices of diligence can easily be seen in laziness, sloth and acedia, but the excesses of diligence are not that easy to spot. Christians can be particularly vulnerable to obsessive–compulsive behaviours and overly controlling attitudes. These are vices that drain the vitality out of life. Diligence and work need to be mitigated by the practices of rest and Sabbath, for diligence is also about resting well and enjoying the goodness of life.

Do any of these describe you?  If they do, and if your score in the Virtue Test was low in this virtue, then you may want to choose to work on the virtue of diligence in your character.



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