Most of us spend our lives working a job to bring in the dough, but what does God think about the principle of work and how it should have an impact on our lives?
“The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” —Genesis 2:15
As the creator of all things, we were made in his image and likeness and thus we have always had the purpose to create things.
This doesn’t mean that we are meant to slave away our days of life, but what God truly wants for us is to create life and love in all things that we touch. To glorify his name through our works here on earth.
Saint Joseph was a humble carpenter who took great care in his craft. Whatever it is that you specialize in: whether you are a labourer, server, lawyer, doctor or in a corporate job, remember that you are called to do good work in God’s name and to reflect his love all that you do.
Most times we tend to think that the only reason we should work is that we ought to make an income to facilitate our lives thus we do not put full effort into the work. Saint Joseph the worker has been sent to remind us that we ought to work as if we were working for the Lord.
Getting Tired While Working
Remember the feeling of starting on a brand new job or project? The peak levels of excitement that get us motivated to accomplish big things?
It’s natural for people to start taking things easy as time goes by, or perhaps we may even lose focus on why we are working in the first place.
Saint Joseph is reminding us that the Lord never grows weary or exhausted and we can rely on His strength to continue our daily toil.
Sometimes we simply need to reframe our idea of work.
If we are working simply to put food on the table, our motivation levels tend to erode after some time. Instead, every day that we step out of the house is an opportunity to create beautiful things in God’s name.
The amount of effort and discipline that we put in is a reflection of the goodness of our creator.
When we put our trust in God, however, we will not get tired, we will not faint, and we will accomplish things that seem impossible to other people; we will soar with the wings of an eagle.
It is imperative that we keep in mind that our best efforts will bear fruit and we shall never grow weary when we are strengthened by the grace of God. For in God’s might, nothing is impossible.
Working hard is important, and there is huge merit in someone who is dedicated to his craft day in and day out. But God is also calling upon us to work smart in our day to day lives.
Sometimes the best results are achieved by trying something new instead of banging against the wall hoping for it to give way eventually.
Take a step back and make an assessment of your current labor. Is there any way to go about it in a way that will achieve better results with less effort?
By being productive and saving time on one project, we can free up time to start on others or to spend quality time with the family.
Call upon St. Joseph in prayer for his intercession to help identify areas of opportunity the things that you do so that you can find the best method of achieving the same results.
It does not have to be limited to your employment, even personal projects and leisure activities are things that we can take to the Lord in prayer.
Trust that the the Lord in His infinite wisdom and understanding will show us the intelligent way to move forward.
It’s Okay to Take Breaks to Recharge
We were not meant to devote our lives mindlessly into working every day, 24/7. Even after the creation of the earth in Genesis, God “rested” on the 7th day.
After we have completed a project or task that we set out to do it is good that we take a break to refocus our thoughts and energies.
Take some time off and spend it with the things that matter the most to you in life. Enjoy the company of your family, connect with friends and spend time in quiet contemplation or prayer in the Lord.
Principles of Work
Saint Joseph comes to offer us some principles to remember when carrying out any type of work as stipulated below:
- God is the one who decides the outcome. Our role is to work as diligently as we can and leave the outcome to him. “Proverbs 21:31; The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the LORD.”
- Commit your work to the Lord. “Proverbs 16:3 Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” Before you begin working, commit all your plans to the Lord.
- Your work is to God and not to man. Even though it might look like you’re serving man. “Colossians 3:23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”
- Finally, avoid procrastination and always plan ahead. Proverbs 6:6-11; …How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest—and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man.”
Saint Joseph is also providing us with some measures to help us examine the success criteria of the work we do as follows;
- Is your intention for the work to promote the glory of God?
- Did you meet the expected outcomes of the scope of the work?
- Did you use your time well doing the work?
- Did you deploy resources used to complete the task were used responsibly?
If you are self-employed or work for someone else, you still need to ask yourself these questions if you want to engage in critical thinking about your work. Work that is done with intelligence will equip you to produce intelligent results for the glory of God.
In conclusion, Saint Joseph reminds us that at the end of time we will be accountable to God for the work that we did and he will be the one to judge whether we did it for his glory and for the benefit of others or whether we did it for our own selfish gains.
Prayer to Saint Joseph
“Dear Saint Joseph, thank you for your support in my life.
I pray that you may teach me how to love my work and always do it to please God.
May my efforts bear fruits in all seasons of life.”