God’s Workmen - Purpose of Work - Colossians 3:23-25
August 5, 2022, 9:05 AM

"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 Christ you are serving. Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for his wrong, and there is no favoritism."

William Willimon, the dean of the chapel at Duke University, wrote on the topic of clergy and laity burnout. He observed, with insight, that seldom is burnout the direct result of overwork. Hard and demanding work often can be remarkably energizing. Instead, argues Willimon, burnout is almost always the result of a loss of sense of meaning in our labors. We find sustained energy when we are engaged in something we believe matters.

One poem goes "I may not do great things for God

who did so much for me; but if I do the little things,

His work through me I'll see."

Work Spiritually. We need to see that God is our boss, not the person who pays our bills or the one who hired us. Christians need to understand there is no such thing as secular and sacred work. That is not a distinction in the New Testament. Too often people put work into these two categories. Running the business of a corporation is secular versus running the business of a church is sacred. Singing in the choir is sacred versus singing on stage is secular. Building an office complex is secular but building a church is sacred. As a result, lay people see most of their time spent in secular activity. They believe that the only time they are serving Christ is when they are doing what is spiritual i.e., teaching SS, singing in choir, serving on a church board, praying, or sharing their faith with someone who doesn't know about Jesus. Because secular jobs are so demanding they have little time to do these extra spiritual things.

Many think that only ministers and full time Christian workers are doing ministry. What a difference the New Testament makes where the believers were Spirit-filled. They spread the gospel in ways natural to them. They were filled with the love of God and demonstrated this love by caring for others and sharing possessions. What spoke to the non-Christian world was their attitudes which were most clearly seen in the work world. The greatest impact for Jesus was not through mass media and the Jerusalem Gazette, but through the witness of the body of Christ through the way they lived between Sundays in their home and neighborhoods, in their social contacts, and on their jobs day in and out. Under the influence of the Holy Spirit, they demonstrated Christian love and caring in ways natural to them and shared their faith with friends. They affirmed confidently how God changed their lives and how He can change anyone's life.

God wants honest service. You, as a Christ-follower, seek to pay bills on time and pay what you owe. Faith is seeking to live for Jesus in a world that keeps tempting us in different ways, with different purposes, and different pleasures.

Application: Work as working for the Lord, not man.

Prayer: Lord, help me to live for You. To be in Your presence in everything I do.

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