Let us do our duty in our shop or our kitchen, in the market, the street, the office, the school, the home, just as faithfully as if we stood in the front rank of some great battle, and knew that victory for mankind depended on our bravery, strength, and skill. When we do that, the humblest of us will be serving in that great army which achieves the welfare of the world.
A story is told that Whistler once painted a tiny picture of a spray of roses. The artistry involved in the picture was magnificent. Never before, it seemed, had the art of man been able to execute quite so deftly a reproduction of the art of nature. The picture was the envy of the artists who saw it, the despair of the collectors who yearned to buy it. But Whistler refused steadfastly to sell it. "For," he said, "whenever I feel that my hand has lost its cunning, whenever I doubt my ability, I look at the little picture of the spray of roses, and say to myself, 'Whistler, you painted that. Your hand drew it. Your imagination conceived the colors. Your skill put the roses on the canvas.' Then, said he, "I know that what I have done, I can do again"
Sterling W. Sill (1903 - 1994)
Source: Told by Sterling W. Sill in Majesty of Books, p. 128
The secret of the true love of work is the hope of success in that work; not for the money reward, for the time spent, or for the skill exercised, but for the successful result in the accomplishment of the work itself.
Good work is dignified. It develops your faculties and serves your community. It is a central human activity. Work, in this view: makes you honest with yourself, requires that you develop your faculties and skills, empowers you to do what you are really good at and love to do, connects you in a compassionate way with the outside world, supports the philosophy of non-destructiveness and sustainability, and integrates work with personal life and community.