TODAY’S SIGNATURE VERSE ••• The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. (Genesis 2:15 ESV)
PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• I’ve been accused of being a workaholic. There may or may not be, but probably is, some degree of truth to the accusation. I enjoy work. I don’t like to be idle or bored, so I am always eager for projects to keep me busy.
While I sometimes need to be reminded to rest, too, the fact is — work is a gift. And it has been from the very beginning. Genesis 2:15 says, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it” (ESV). Work isn’t the result of sin; God created man and immediately gave him a job to do.
And throughout the Bible, we see the importance of work emphasized. A few examples:
- And let the beauty of the Lord of our God be upon us, And establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands. (Psalm 90:17)
- Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, Which, having no captain, Overseer or ruler, Provides her supplies in the summer, And gathers her food in the harvest. (Proverbs 6:6-8)
- For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. (2 Thessalonians 3:10)
Then, there’s my personal favorite…. A sort of “life verse” for my work ethic: “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men…” (Colossians 3:23).
Even Jesus spoke of His work in John 5:17: “But Jesus answered them, ‘My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.’”
Your Heavenly Father and Creator has given you specific talents and skills. He has gifted you with work because it’s another aspect of how you are made in God’s image.
Because God works, too. Jewish tradition holds that God alone is exempt from the Sabbath because He upholds the universe. After all, He created it (Genesis 1:1-31). Yes, He rested on the seventh day. But God didn’t rest because He needed a physical/mental break. He is all-powerful (Psalm 147:5), and nothing is impossible for Him (Luke 1:37). God rested to set the example for us because man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath was made for man (Mark 2:27).
God is not idle. In fact, it’s for this reason that the words of Jesus were so outrageous to the Pharisees in the aforementioned John 5:17. As Jesus responded to the complaints that He had performed miracles on the Sabbath, He was declaring His deity.
Now before my friend Alice begins to worry — no, I’m not working on the Sabbath. I’ve stopped working on Sundays, determined to take a day of rest. Rest is important, and God knew we would need it. However, we also need balance.
So we work. Our gift to exercise our God-given intellect… to earn our income… It’s such a privilege! But too often, we spend more time complaining about work than we do being thankful for it.
Sure, it would be nice if money grew on trees and we could spend our days doing whatever we want. But that’s not what God did. After all — God provides the worms, but still, the sparrow has to find them. It’s a reminder that we need to utilize the gift of work, too.
Don’t get me wrong — I know there are some jobs where it’s just not a good fit. Perhaps there are personality clashes. But still — we’re told to rejoice. Still, we’re told to give thanks. And if you have a job where you’re unhappy — then God has equipped you with the intellect to search for another. Pray about it!
Whether you have a job you love or a job you hate — I have a challenge for you this week… I’m challenging you to look at your job not just as a means to an end… but to look at your job as a gift.
Change your mindset from “I have to work” to “I get to work!”
Today, as you pray, celebrate that God has gifted you with skills and talents! Pray for your company, your supervisors, and your coworkers. Be thankful for the opportunity to work. Follow Paul’s instructions to rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and give thanks (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). Ask the Holy Spirit to use you in your job; ask Him to open doors, and let you be the hands and feet of Jesus in your workplace.
SHARING ••• My Grace-Full Life is written by Denise Heidel. You are welcome to share anything I write, but please credit my writing and graphics accordingly. Visit www.MyGraceFullLife.com to read past blogs. Subscribe through my website to have My Grace-Full Life delivered to your email. You can unsubscribe at any time. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the NKJV translation.