Efforts V/s Mercy

Unless we extend our best efforts earnestly, and qualify ourselves for the Lord’s mercy, it is next to impossible that we can be rescued from out fallen condition.

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Upadesha Upakdhyana markata -o-marjara nyaya.
[Devotional service] is a great transcendental science and begins with the process of hearing and chanting the name, fame, glory, etc., of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Revival of the dormant affection or love of Godhead does not depend on the mechanical system of hearing and chanting, but it solely and wholly depends on the causeless mercy of the Lord. When the Lord is fully satisfied with the sincere efforts of the devotee, He may endow him with His loving transcendental service.