How Is Your Work?

josh preachingThe Beginning of Work

•    Right after God creates man and women, He blesses them and gives them two commandments (Genesis 1:28)

o    “Be fruitful and increase in number”
o    “fill the earth and subdue it”
o    Family and work

•    Contrary to the thoughts of some, work is good
•    Humanity was created to be active – doing something

(audio file of sermon can be found here)

Influence Through One’s Work Life

•    It doesn’t matter what type of work you do

o    Housewife
o    Salesperson
o    Restaurant employee
o    Student
o    Farmer
o    Construction
o    Desk-jockey
o    Volunteer (food pantry, clothing closet)

•    Each one of use is doing something – some kind of work
•    And each one of use has an opportunity through our work life to bless people and share the message of the Kingdom to them

Don’t like work

•    I know that there are some people who hate their jobs

o    It drains them and is a pain
o    They do it because they need to eat

•    The truth is that each of us much work to live

Working for God

•    No matter if we like or hate our jobs, we are to work as unto Jesus

o    Colossians 3:15-17

15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

•    A few verses later, St. Paul goes on to say

o    Colossians 3:22-24

22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. 23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

•    A Quick word about slaves

o    They didn’t have any rights
o    They had to do what their masters told them to do

•    St. Paul is telling them that even though they may be in a job they hate (who would want to be a slave?) they are to work as if toward Jesus

o    This is a powerful lesson for us

•    You see, we have a choice

o    We can choose to work as to Jesus in all things
o    Or we can choose to complain and work as if to ourselves

•    Which one honors God?

Lesson’s from the Dishwasher

•    Brother Lawrence was a simple monk born into poverty in 1600’s who joined a monastery in Paris, France
•    He job was to help in the kitchen – cooking and cleaning
•    This is what he wrote about his job

“The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer; and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I posses God in as great tranquility as if I were upon my knees as the blessed sacrament.”

•    To live like this!
•    To see no difference in working in the middle of a storm or sitting at Jesus feed during communion!

The Meaning of Work

•    For follows of Jesus the meaning of work changes
•    No longer are we working just to get something to eat
•    We are working to see others loved, served, encouraged,
•    We are working to be able to give away money, time, or stuff for the Kingdom of God
•    We are working for Jesus!!

The Old Fisherman

•    While St. Paul talked about working for Jesus, St. Peter helps us deal with the pain and sorrow that sometimes comes with working

13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. 15 For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. 16 Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. 17 Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.

•    We are to show Jesus to our co-workers through our actions
•    We are to respect everyone – even those we don’t like

o    Why?
o    Because even the most disrespectful person on the planet was still made in the image of God!
o    People have value – even if their actions don’t show it

18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

22 “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.”

23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” 25 For “you were like sheep going astray,” but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

•    Actions… working for Jesus
•    God is calling us towards a different standard than the rest of the world
•    We are to preach the Gospel of Jesus with words and deeds
•    Let’s introduce our co-workers to Jesus
•    Let us introduce everyone we met to Jesus – let us never fail to give glory to the King of Kings!!

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