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W O R K. The dreaded four letter word that plagues every individual even from childhood. However, work does not have to be “dreaded”. God has something laid out for each of us. Some of us may see our work as mundane, yet each role is important. Even a trash man is important, and even revered by little ones.
“Every one of us has a line of duty marked out for us by God.” Elisabeth Elliot, Discipline: The Glad Surrender.
Working for the Glory of God
Each morning for me is similar. Wake up early for quiet time and a quick shower. Then to the kitchen to make my husband’s lunch and begin my family’s breakfast. The rest of my day consists of cleaning, schooling for my son, running errands, and cooking lunch and dinner. This is the “line of duty” that God has marked out for me, as of this season in my life. Sometimes it seems daunting. The same boring things being done over and over. To be honest, some days I have to push myself to continue doing the laundry, engaging fully with my children (not that I don’t enjoy them, but sometimes you just need a break), and constantly cleaning the same place that keeps getting dirty day in and day out.
However, no matter how mundane, these things are done in service to my family and God. Serving others is a calling of all followers of Christ. I am serving my family in love with what I do every day. My husband serves us and God by going to work and earning a livelihood that provides for us. Our “work” is different, yet both important. Our work is done in humility and service.
Warning against Idleness
Honestly, it would be very easy to lie in bed and watch my favorite and “not watched very often” television shows for hours and my husband may never know the difference. Our only agreed upon requirement is that dinner to be ready when he gets home from work. If that is all I do, I might be able to get away with being lazy. However, that is not what God wants of me.
“If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.” 2 Thessalonians 3:10
We should be about the work that God has given us to do, whether that be sitting behind a desk, cleaning toilets, managing a household, or managing a huge corporation. Each job is important and necessary for everything to run correctly in our homes and in society.
Discipline to Keep Going
There are moments when it seems hard to keep going, especially if you are called to a position that seems unimportant. However, we are told not to grow weary of doing good. If this happens, a moment is needed spent with God to regain focus and drive to keep going. God knows our hearts, minds, and ambitions concerning our work ethic. We should always work to honor God first.
Discipline is required to keep going on in our work. Discipline simply means to train oneself to obey a code of rules. Acquiring discipline is often a lifelong pursuit. Our drive to train ourselves must be derived in God. Knowing that our earthly pursuits are in accordance to our heavenly goals helps us to keep motivated to do even the most mundane services.
“Do not grow weary in doing good.” 2 Thessalonians 3: 13
Discipline as an Example to Others
My children are front row spectators to my work ethic. They know when mommy neglects her responsibilities and then wants to do the same. Their work view is shaped around how my husband and I work. I try to teach them by incorporating them into my daily work routine. This allows them see the importance and value in everyday chores. Even at a young age, they can have responsibilities that serve the family, teaches them work ethic, and gives a purpose to the day.
Discipline is not acquired overnight. We must continue to work at it and push ourselves to do things that we may not feel very important to accomplish. However, disciplined work honors our Lord and family. So, keep doing the good work of the Lord and setting a great example for others!