She Works Hard for the Money

Colossians 3:23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.

My very first "real" job was at the Catfish Inn outside Athens, Alabama. I was a "drink girl" and a "hush puppy girl". Providing these vital functions meant I kept my tables well-supplied in hush puppies and sweet tea. One simply can not consume fried catfish without an ample dose of these yummy accompaniments. However, the hush puppy girl received no share of the tips. Hundreds of hush puppy baskets and gallons of iced tea yielded a reward of about ten dollars for my nightly shift.

This morning I begin the book of 1 Thessalonians by reading the 1st chapter. As Paul greets the church at Thessalonica, he recalls three remarkable qualities of this church (Verse 3):
  1. Work Produced by Faith - As I busily shuttled hush puppies from kitchen to table, I had one goal in mind: to earn money. My work was produced by need and desire, not faith. Faith should be the fuel of every work for a Christian. It is faith that turns every occupation into a ministry. Whether you're preparing your company's annual budget or waiting on tables, faith propels the mundane into ministry. Saving your company money and therefore your coworkers jobs is a ministry. Serving your customers with joy and kindness is a ministry. My work needs to be produced by faith.
  2. Labor Prompted by Love - I have always sought to be excellent in my work. If I were really honest though, I would have to admit I did so because I took pride in my labor and enjoyed achievement. My work was prompted by self-gratification not love. It is love that transforms tasks from steps up the ladder of success to moments of sacrifice and service to others. When my work is motivated by love, organizing a meeting becomes an opportunity to put others needs before my own and performing my function on the assembly line is packaged as a possibility to meet someone else's needs.
  3. Endurance Inspired by Hope - I can think of very few days in my life when I've called in sick or left my work early. I endured to the final work hour. When I earned wages hourly, this was because I didn't want to short change my pay check. When I earned wages from a salary, this is because I wanted to be well thought of and respected by my peers and supervisors. I endured but not because of hope. The hope of Jesus Christ means that my life has purpose. The hope of Jesus Christ means my days can have meaning.

Jesus, You add purpose and meaning to every aspect of my life. Today I make even less then I did when I filled glasses. My salary is measured at zero but that doesn't mean my work can't be produced by faith, prompted by love and inspired by hope. Today You will be my unseen coworker filling my moments with faith, hope and love.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love hearing from you! Thank you for your comments!