Sadly, the work ethic in our culture is not what it once was. We have lost our drive; our desire. Work has become a four letter word. Much is revealed about our attitudes when we hear someone say “don't work too hard” or “take it easy”. It is assumed that people don't want to work and that it is not necessary to work. Work is feared and underappreciated.
As Christians what should be our attitude toward work? What does the Bible say? Here are some thoughts:
When God created the first man Adam, what did he have in mind for him to do? Remember, Adam was commanded to work and to take care of the Garden of Eden. [Gen 2:15]. So, Adam didn't just “take it easy”, he had a job to do. God expected work. Adam dove in and worked hard to complete his task. Later on God saw how hard he worked, so he blessed him with a helper, ie, Eve. Hard work is rewarded by God.
Adam (Reid) recently taught on Ephesians. Remember Ephesians 2:10? “We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” So you see, just like Adam, we have a job to do. God expects work from us, and just like Adam, we will be rewarded for our hard work.
I like Romans chapter 16. This is Paul's salutation to the Roman church, and specifically honors individuals in the church. Notice: Priscilla and Aquila are called “fellow workers”; Mary, who worked very hard for you; Tryphena and Tryphosa, women who worked very hard in the Lord. Persis is another woman who worked very hard in the Lord. So you see that God honors those who work hard. Our work is not forgotten. Someone is watching and taking note of all that we do. How would you like to have your name added to this list? Wow!
Here is a key to pleasing the LORD with our work: Colossians 3:23 says: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord you are serving.” You got that? No matter who signs your paycheck, really you should see yourself as working for the Lord. Human bosses fall short, but God never does. He will reward you.
Here is a rule that Apostle Paul laid down for all the churches: 2 Thessalonians 3:10, “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” This is a hard saying. What does Paul mean? Did he want people to starve? I think he wanted everyone to see, as much as it depended on them, that it was not fair if some worked and others did not. However, this was a rule for the church and not for everyone in society.
Will we work in Heaven? Yes according to Randy Alcorn of Eternal Perspective Ministries. He gives many passages that indicate that we will have responsibilities. Often people are surprised to learn this as Heaven is mistakenly thought to be a boring place with nothing to do but sing and play harps. In reality, Heaven will be an amazing and awesome place.
Proverbs 14:23 says “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.” Hard work yields a return, but good intentions lead to nothing. Think about it! Here are several people as examples:
Tiger Woods has become one of the greatest golfers ever. How did he get there? - Hard work. As a young boy, his father pushed him to be better. He taught him discipline. Young Tiger Woods made golf his passion and sacrificed many other distractions to reach his goal. He achieved it. He is a hard worker.
Elon Musk is a name everyone has heard of. He has his hands in many things and has been successful at all of them. I don't know much about him, but I know he must be an incredibly hard worker. His Tesla Motors, Spacex rockets, and his boring company have really changed our world in many ways. He is also super rich.
God designed our bodies to work. Consequently, when we don't work our bodies, we are not using them as they were designed. Bad things happen. Here are some benefits to hard work:
- Sleep well. We never sleep better than when our body is dead tired.
- Satisfaction of a job well done.
- Our mind stays sharp and focused when we work.
- We reap only when we sow.
- Our bodies become firm and muscular.
I am sure there are great examples of hard workers in your life. Think about their life, their outcome, and imitate them.
I hope these thoughts on WORK have inspired you. So go out and WORK HARD!