WORK AS SACRED
Scripture: Genesis 1:26-27: “Then God said, ‘Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky., over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground’.”
God saw that all He had done, and it was good. It was very good.
As we celebrate today, Labor Day, let’s focus on the good work of God. God worked. He created all that is around us and for us, to enjoy and to maintain. But it took work. Six days of work.
God’s work shows us that work is a holy vocation, a sacred undertaking. God worked, therefore, He expects it of us, as well. But work is not just a means to an end, a paycheck. Work is sacred, entrusted to us from the very beginning in the Garden. As a Bible study I’m currently doing says, “We are made for cooperative participation with God in His work…He is the Creator, and HE creates us to be creators. Our stewardship of creation was to mirror His care in creating it.”
Work always had been God’s intention for His human creatures. He instructed Adam and Eve to work the Garden, to tend the animals, and to have dominion over them. And that was before the Fall. Our work was (and is still) meant to join us to God through His own work of creation. He worked, therefore, we work.
God also worked to create a place that we could enjoy and take pleasure in: lakes, oceans, mountains, prairies, clouds, flowers, trees, animals. They are all good, and God worked to create these pleasures for us, to delight us, to educate us, even to mystify us.
It is also through work that we are transformed. We learn patience, self-control, perseverance, how to truly love our “neighbor” (i.e. that contentious co-worker or boss), how to serve others unconditionally and sacrificially. Work is not just work when seen in this light. Work is sanctification. It is through our work—whether it is in an office or through manual labor—that transformation takes root and grows. And that is good. Very good.
So, don’t look at work as mere drudgery, although the work itself can be that. Don’t view it as a means to an end, as your “lot in life.” See beyond that. Focus on what sanctification is working in you, how it is conforming you to the image of Jesus, how it is transforming you into a more holy human being.
Be encouraged. Be blessed.