Working With Love For The Glory of God
Author Seth Godin has written extensively about the joy of doing good work. He recalled a time when he was on vacation, and had spent a wonderful day at a resort in Jamaica with his family.
That evening after everyone had settled down for the night, he went to the hotel lobby where there was a computer hooked up to internet. He settled in and was happily answering emails and doing a bit of work. A couple walked by then and he heard the man say, "Look at that poor guy, working on his vacation."
Godin remembers thinking, "Poor guy?" He enjoyed his work, and was happy to be doing it. He thought about how he'd spent a wonderful day relaxing and decompressing, spending time with his family, and how much joy it brought him.
He also thought about how much joy he got from working, and considered himself blessed that both aspects of his life were joyful and life-giving.
I like to work. I'm one of those people who will spend at least a portion of his day off or vacation happily working--writing, studying, answering some emails, planning and the like. I haven't always gotten the balance of work and rest right, to be sure, but I'm working at it harder than I used to.
I've learned some things about work in my years of studying, teaching and preaching from the Bible. I've come to understand that there is something holy and beautiful about good work done to the glory of God.
In Genesis 2:15 we see the first mention of work as "The Lord God took [Adam] and placed him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." Work was established from the beginning, according to the text, as part of humankind's response to God's goodness.
The Apostle Paul echoed this idea when he said, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord [Jesus Christ] and not for human masters." (Colossians 3:23)
The great Lebanese poet Kahlil Gibran once wrote, "All work is empty save when there is love...when you work with love you bind yourself to yourself, and to one another, and to God."
May your work today (whatever it might be) be done with love. May you find joy in your work as you work with love for family and friends. May you find the fulfillment that God longs for you to discover in work done well, and to God's glory.
And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.