It is simple to accept the invitation onto the bandwagon of American culture and to buy into the notion that we work 9-5 only for the weekend that awaits us at the end. God has not called us to a life of misery. Our portion is joy, but it is our responsibility to train ourselves to choose this joy. We must set forth every effort to enjoy what we do.
I first want to begin my exhortation on this subject by suggesting the following items that impede our enjoyment of work:
Grab a coffee and jot these down.
- Our attitude toward work:
The first thing that separates us from experiencing this wholesome enjoyment during work is our attitude toward it. We are not slaves to the present government. I love that Isaiah points us to the fact that the government actually rests on Jesus’ shoulders. That means that everything in the universe is in submission to Jesus, and he is the one who really sets all the laws. Not only so but he provides our daily bread. Given this, all of our work should be unto him and for the purpose of bringing him glory. We have no real reason for self-pity and remaining in the realm of fear and exhaustion. We serve the King of kings. Ironically if we set our minds solely on survival and security we will actually be hindered from enjoying a comfortable life. To be soberly aware that our the government rests on his shoulders and that he will care for us will help redefine our attitudes toward what we do. We are not slaves.
2. Our delusion that we belong to ourselves.
Bought with a price.
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
1 Corinthians 6:20
Our bodies our not our own, and so we must do with them what the Lord wants. It is according to his character that he would only want his children to do things that would benefit them. This means that if the Lord is asking us to work ( and he is ) it will ultimately draw us closer to him and be for our long-term benefit. Our bodies are not our own, and we must sometimes do the opposite of what we crave to do. As we learn to love him, this will become a joy. There it is, to know that the Lord would not ask us to do anything to our detriment is essential to transforming our outlook on work. Not only this, but even if we do not immediately understand how such menial and mundane tasks that we must perform in our daily living, build us up in any way, then we must still do them because we love him on whose shoulders our government rests. To love the Lord is simple.
3. Work keeps us occupied.
This is a salvation. We are encouraged in proverbs that it is even a virtue not to “eat the bread of idleness” (Proverbs 31:27).
I find that it is during the time in which I am free from any obligations or commitments that my mind wanders of to the least godly of things. The flesh is just so aware for whatever reason, that I have nothing to do and it wants to be busy. I tell you that the bread of idleness is a deceptive little loaf and work can prevent us from even sitting at it’s table. Praise the lord for work.
We should rejoice in the fact the Lord has chosen in advance which works we would perform in order to glorify him (Ephesians 2:10). In Christ there is so much freedom from the deceptive lifestyle the flesh craves and thinks it can be satisfied with.
Confessions from the Author:
This is my encouragement on work and the most recent things that I have learned/ have been revealed to me related to the topic. I have recently graduated college and started with a full time career and I must confess that my labor is mundane and the days feel long that I spend seated there in front of a monitor. I love my job. It is refreshing to be surrounded by so many positive co-workers, but I become so easily bored, well before the time has come to go home. And yet the Lord provided me with this job to glorify him, so I have felt challenged lately that while I could get away with resenting my time on the clock and day-dreaming about new pastimes for the weekend, it is not the best for my spiritual growth, and is anything is but fruitful. Enjoyment is God’s heart.