Focal Passage: Colossians 3:22-4:1
Sometimes work is perceived as something bad. God designed mankind to work (tending the Garden of Eden) before the fall. Work is not just a bane or drudgery. Rather, it is a privilege.
Surely, many forms of labor and the significant challenges presented are effects of our fall into sin. Part of God’s curse upon sin is reflected in the difficulty and challenge the earth presents back to us in our work. But as we work, we should reflect the creative activity and glory of God in what we do, in all that we do whether at our place of labor or at home.
In the text, Paul addresses slaves who were under obligation to their masters. If Paul could expect a slave to work for the glory of God who had no choice about his enslavement, then no doubt God can expect all of us to work for His glory.
I believe Paul’s teaching and the biblical paradigm is that work, both in and outside the home, for a paycheck and for the family, is to be understood as meaningful.
Work is reflective of the God we serve. God worked in creation to give us the world we have. God works regularly in His sustaining and providential care for creation. God worked in the person of His Son Jesus Christ when Jesus came to earth to live perfectly and become the once and for all sacrifice for our sins. Jesus’ work on earth was labor – making disciples of selfish and immature followers. His sacrificial suffering and death on the cross was labor – intense in its pain and suffering, immense in its implications for mankind and creation.
And wonderfully, His work does not mean that we do not work. Rather His redeeming work on the cross provides us validation and the opportunity for meaningful work and service.
So, are you working for the glory of God?