Monday, January 30, 2017

Made to Work

Made to Work
January 30, 2017
Genesis 2:15 "The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it."

I have the privilege to work with several new employees at my place of employment and they are both fresh out of college, now starting their first jobs. They have confessed it is their first job and I notice that right away to be true by way of their work ethic.  They understand they are there to work, slightly.  I say slightly because their interpretation of working requires very little productivity, a good deal of socializing, and frequent brakes for social media interaction throughout the day while on the clock.  While I won't label them, I will suggest they are the same age as the Millennial generation. They may not make it long at my place of employment, or maybe our mutual employer isn't paying them very well and not worried about a return on wages paid. I wonder who failed to instill a work ethic into them?  Or maybe they just don't realize in whose image they are made.

The Lord God made us in His image.  If you review the very first glimpses we have of the Lord, we find Him hard at work creating the universe, our earth, the plants and animals, and even man.  Before it was said that man was made in the image of God, it was found that there was no one to work the soil that the Lord created.  That was when the Lord decided to make man. And the Lord placed man in the garden to work.  We are made in the image of someone who works, and we were made to actually work.  That is how God set it up and that is how He made us.  We innately have the ability to work, carrying inside us a secret, almost animal instinct to work. My co-workers, along with many Millennials, have the ability, the instinct to work.  But somewhere along the line, someone convinced them of a lie, that they only need to be happy in life, doing whatever it is that makes them fulfilled. The problem is, no one ever thinks work can be fulfilling; only personal gratification can be fulfilling, they rationalize.

Ironically, personal gratification usually only leads to sin, demoralization, emptiness, and a continual search for meaning in life.  It doesn't ever make someone happy.  While work is sometimes, most of the time, work, it can be very satisfactory and fulfilling.  We were all made to work. Every child is somehow raised thinking he or she is special.  While every mother tells her child he or she is special, the reality of the situation is they aren't any more special than another mother's child. With a very loving attitude, I make sure I tell my children they aren't any more special than anyone else, and they are made to work. While this isn't something every child wants to hear, I'd be doing them a disservice if I said otherwise. It is part of discipleship, appropriate child rearing. Maybe the disservice we've done for the Millennial generation is that we've failed to remind them they were made in the image of God.  For some reason they think they are able to create their own image of themselves.  They were made to reflect the creator, just like you and me, which actually includes working.

Work somehow doesn't feel very spiritual most days. But the physical act of work is, in and of itself, a reflection of the Savior and joy to the Father. He looks down from Heaven at his creation, and sees all things doing what He created them to do, and He is blessed. Maybe you don't particularly like the actual work that you do, but maybe you could somehow see it as an act of praise, if you put your heart into it and did a job well done?  Maybe right now it might be considered a sacrifice of praise, but nonetheless your work is part of what the Lord made you to do. He cares about your work and you should be determined to praise Him through it. If you desperately desire different work, then work hard at what is in front of you and pray He gives you something different. If I'm ever allowed to mentor or lead these Millennials at work, the first thing we are going to do is have a good old fashioned Sunday school lesson straight out of Genesis.

Don't take my word for it; look it up:  Gen 1-2, 2 Thes 3:10-13, Col 3:23

No comments: