Proverbs 10:4, “Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth.”

King Solomon in the above proverb is contrasting the difference between the “poor man” and the “wealthy man.”  The poor man, in general, is said to be poor because he or she has “lazy hands” and the wealthy are rich, generally speaking, because they have “diligent hands.”  What kind of hands do you have?

Are you the kind of person that has to work on the job even if others are not because you hate laziness?  Or are you the kind of person that always looks for the least amount of work to do just to get by?  Are you comfortable not working hard in life or do you feel driven to always give your best no matter what you do- parenting, work, church, etc.?

Some people don’t mind living on food stamps or receiving government checks because they think it’s owed to them.  I worked in the inner city of New Orleans for over 7 years and saw this kind of mindset every day.  I call this way of thinking a “poverty mindset.”  Meaning, poverty is a comfortable place for some people to live be because they have no desire to change their situation.  People with a poverty mindset would rather have a “handout” than a “hand up.”

At the same time, I’ve had the privilege of meeting some really successful businessmen and women who have worked hard in life and have the wealth to show for it.  One thing all these people had in common was their drive and passion to work hard.  Some of them came from poverty, other countries, and even had broken the law in the past.  However, at one point in their lives they all made a decision to work hard and never give up.

Of course, King Solomon was aware of people in his day that fell on hard times and may have been poor at times because of unforeseen circumstances.  However, even when good hard working people face troubling times, they still have their work ethic.  Therefore, even if people in our day lose their job because of an economic recession, they get back up and keep working hard because they know the only way out of poverty and hard times is to have “diligent hands.”

Make a decision today to avoid laziness and work hard with your hands- eventually it will pay off!


Do you have “diligent hands?”


  1. Repent of any laziness you may have.
  2. Ask God to give you the strength to work hard in life.
  3. Be diligent- never give up!