Sometimes we can begin to feel like we are just worker bees, and quickly we begin to feel burnt out. Whether you love your job or not, we get into rhythms and it can be easy to stop giving our all to our work. Today, we are going to talk about how I think we should approach this as Christians. Be sure to click the green links throughout this post to get more context and scripture references.
We’ve all heard the verse “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” (Colossians 3:23), but I want to stop and take a closer look at it. We can let this verse brush past us and forget it, or we can use it as motivation to glorify Him through our work. I think that if the Lord was standing in front of us as our boss, client, co-worker, etc, and we could visibly see him, we wouldn’t scrape by doing the bare minimum. We would take all our energy and effort we have and lay it down at His feet, desiring to do the best work we possibly could.
Scripture tells us that we are image bearers of Christ, because of that what we do is on display for the world to see Christ through us. We can paint Him in a positive or negative light, it’s likely that we do both frequently. I think as believers the Lord desires for us to go further than just the minimum, to give all we’ve got and more, trusting that He will provide enough for us to keep on giving. I am not talking about working yourself into the ground until your life only revolves around work, I am talking about going above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to serving in your role of work. Why? Because that is what God did for us.
God very well could have given us the bare minimum when He gave us a place to live. He could have created the most basic, necessity-only environment, but He didn’t. As a designer He created a place that is breathtakingly beautiful where we get to live with both sunsets and mountains, waves and leaves. Every detail of our earth screams of His glory too extravagantly for us to understand. And we get to just enjoy it. See here, here and here.
God could have brought us a plan of salvation begrudgingly. He could have seen us sinners, as more of a nuisance than His children. He could have made us fight our way to salvation. Instead He looks at us lovingly and offers salvation that only needs repentance and acceptance. He could have made us work to earn it, instead He gives us grace, mercy, and love. See here, here and here.
God could have let our lives on earth be the end of it. Whatever suffering we’ve endured would be over the day our lives ended and that would be that. We could live just to make life on earth good and worshipful, but no! He has a generous gift for us. Eternity. He promises healing and the opportunity to be co-heirs to His kingdom. He put death to death and promises resurrection. See here, here and here.
We could list things forever, but to me it seems clear that God continually goes above and beyond the call of duty. If our job is to be a display of God’s love to the world, then this is a character trait we need to reflect. I think we need to willing and not even just willing, but eager to go above and beyond the call in serving in our work. Not for our glory but for His. To be a demonstration to the world of a God who goes far beyond what we could ask or imagine in order to bless us. Let’s take that same mentality to bless others. It could be as small as changing your attitude about work (whether it be in an office, in your home, or among your children) into a more positive one. It could mean finding ways to bless your co-workers, or surprise your clients with more ways to love on them. It doesn’t mean working yourself into the ground, it means pouring out of the cup that God fills for you.
It will look different for all of us, but as we head into the end of our week let’s think about this. What would it truly look like if we used all of our hearts to face our work. What if we worked with the mindset of working for the Lord?