Ugh. Somedays, work really takes a lot of work. You don’t always want to put in your best effort. I have days like that, anyway.
When I’m exhausted by the thought of putting one more second of time into producing something for someone else, to someone else’s standards, according to someone else’s timeline, I find encouragement in these verses.
I hope you do too.
1 Thessalonians 4:11-12
“Aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.”
The boring parts of work don’t always leave you feeling fulfilled. The Lord’s desire is rarely that you enjoy glamorous, thrilling things, though. Your purpose is derived from Him, not worldly accomplishments.
Through work, you earn a living in this world, making you dependent on no one. You have the opportunity to demonstrate to those around you Christ’s quiet, honest, integrity-filled way, allowing you to walk properly before outsiders.
Work is an expression of creating and stewarding what the Lord has given you, as you work with your hands. It is part of the affairs that the Lord has given as your responsibility, and work is a part of righteous living.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters”
In your heart, your work can be unto the Lord. It needn’t be for your boss that you do your work honestly and to the best of your ability. Rather, reflect the character of the Lord. God made man, and He is sovereign over the systems we live in. That includes the workplace.
1 Corinthians 15:58
“Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”
Even work that seems in no way related to the Gospel can be used by the Lord for His good purpose. Sticking stamps on a stack of envelops might just be a part of the work of the Lord today –and His work is never in vain.
“May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us—yes, establish the work of our hands.”
You don’t have to figure out how refilling the copier’s ink can be made into a spiritual act. Your work, surrendered to God and completed to glorify Him, is up to God to use as He will. Keep in mind that the work of your hands is part of God’s plans. He will establish it, He will cause it to bear fruit.
1 Corinthians 3:12-13
“…their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work.”
Doing work lazily or half-heartedly without concern for doing it well catches up to you. God knows your heart, your ambitions, your motivations, and your true efforts. Do quality work. It will be tested, it will be shown for what it is the questions remains: will it be shown to glorify God?