COUNCIL FOR THE RESTORATION OF FILIPINO VALUES (CRFV)
Civil Service Commission Accredited Learning and Development Institute
The story of “The Ant and the Grasshopper” is well-known to leaders who value diligence. The Scriptures advised us to take lessons from the ants: To learn from their ways and become wise - though they have no prince or governor or ruler to make them work, they labor hard all summer, gathering food for the winter. According to Buck Jacobs, “Diligence is making a series of successful short-term steps that lead to long-term success. This is accomplished by keeping the vision and principles clearly in focus, not by pursuing quick and easy answers. Diligence doesn’t come naturally for most. It’s the result of strong character and sound leadership.” These points of view help us understand better what diligence is.
Diligence has the dimensions of manner and time. Diligence is pursuing a task until it is done well. As the old proverb says, whatever is worth doing is worth doing well. Diligence is not a one-time value nor a project-based value. Diligence is a continuing value to excellently accomplish the mission and vision even though there may be some distractors that we could find along the way. As we \ix our eyes on the tasks, mission and vision, we will not look to the left or to the right that will cause us to deviate from the desired outcome.Learning from the story of our forefathers, especially in the life of Noah, we can see how he diligently pursued the task with focus. Back in his days, when people became so wicked that even God regretted creating man, Noah was tasked to do a seemingly impossible project after finding favor before God’s eyes. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and walked faithfully with God. God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. So God tasked Noah to make an ark of Cypress and He gave specific instructions on how it should be built, and who and what should be taken in the ark. Noah followed with diligence and faith in God’s word. He received the vision from God and pursued it. At the time Noah and his family were creating the ark, we can imagine the oppositions coming from the left and the right. Noah could have been distracted by the mockery of the people around him. He could have complained and not complied gathering two of every wild animal, livestock and creatures according to its kind. It was a tedious and great task, but he and his household were able to accomplish it according to the instructions given them. In the end, Noah and his household’s diligence saved not only themselves and mankind but also preserved God’s creation. Learning from this, the fruit of our
diligence may not directly benefit us but it will surely be enjoyed by the next generation and the generations to come.
…But diligence is man’s precious possession.”
Proverbs 12:27b (NKJV)
Before digging deeper on this subject, it is important to note why diligence, which is a value in itself, is coupled with a descriptive phrase “with focus”. It is simply because a person can be diligent with a lot of things yet sporadic and haphazard in nature. A person can start a task after task and be diligent to all simultaneously but finishing nothing at all. Such habit and work attitude can be disastrous in a company or organization with a quota to deliver a product in a given time.
Understanding what diligence with focus means based on the above premise, it can be defined as a work ethic characterized by the will to excellently complete a task regardless of circumstances. It signifies determination to finish any endeavor, unmindful of any distraction and seemingly insurmountable obstacles. It is sustained by the principle of discipline. It cannot be true to a worker who is all the while distracted by the recent post on his or her Facebook wall. Neither to a student with homework to accomplish yet attracted to an online game or K-Pop show every now and then. It cannot also be expected from a leader who is easily discouraged by minor issues and unfavorable conditions at the workplace. Rather, a person, who creates conducive environment in the midst of adverse circumstances, has mastered “diligence with focus”.
Nehemiah, in the Scriptures, illustrates best the value of “diligence with focus” when he attempted to pursue his vision of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem in the face of opposition and persecution. He devised a plan and employed strategic mechanisms to muzzle resiliency. Discouraging words were not enough to demoralize him and shut down his passion. All the more that he was challenged to rise. He chose skillful men who understand his zeal with the same frequency of his heart. Inspired by the beauty of a glorious future, he was ready to wield his best performance to realize what his mind can perceive.
From the foregoing discussion, can we think of similar situations or instances in our office, community or at home where the value of “diligence with focus” is very relevant? Do we easily surrender to conflicting situations and pressures that regresses our forward movement?
With our pursuit for transformation, for example, are we now in the brink of terminating our action plans simply because of the endless misconduct and dishonest dealings around? Consider the fact that we are the living heroes in our day. Let us continue the fight to arrest the state of decay and decline in our agency, institution, the next generation, and our country. This is our time to raise the banner of righteousness. Together, we can, as we exemplify the value of diligence with focus on the truth that righteousness exalts a nation.
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CRFV was recently appointed as the implementing Civil Society Organization of the Values Restoration Program (Civil Service Commission Announcement No. 40 s. 2013) empowering the organization to deliver its advocacy to all Constitutional Bodies, Departments, Bureaus and National Government Agencies (NGAs); Local Government Units (LGUs); Government-Owned and Controlled Corporations (GOCCs) with original charters; and State Universities and Colleges (SUCs).
There is a nationwide launching and discussion of a common value each week.
The Council for the Restoration of Filipino Values (CRFV) is a non-government organization (NGO) dedicated to the effort in transforming the Filipino public servant and the local government leadership to subscribe to the Code of Ethics and Values that shall provide our nation, the Philippines, with righteous, incorruptible, and sincere service towards a graft free society through the help and guidance of the word of GOD consistent to the exemplary life of our Lord Jesus Christ.