Work can cause serious struggle in our lives.
Some of us are unemployed. Others are underemployed. A few of us are in the jobs we spent years training for, but have since discovered it wasn’t what we expected.
Most of us wonder about what we do every day. Does it really matter?
In the message on Sunday, Kayla reminded us that when we forget two things–who we are and where we are going–work can cause struggle in our lives. However, when we remember that we were created in the image of a creator God to partner with Him in His redemptive work, our work gets realigned (Genesis 1:16-28). We are commissioned to work alongside God to bring about His shalom– to set all things right according to their intended purpose.
There is no job or place where God does not want to bring His shalom. It can be difficult to remember this concept when you’re changing a poopy diaper, swamped with paperwork or buried in unanswered emails.
No matter what work assignments I’ve had–student, construction, custodial work, or ministry–I’ve found that I must be intentional in choosing to align myself with God’s purposes in my work rather than my own. When I don’t, my struggle with work is real and I find myself questioning the significance of my work–am I making any difference at all?
If you’ve ever found yourself saying, “I’m just a _______________ (fill in the blank with your line of work or your “assignment”)… I don’t make much of a difference…“ I encourage you to watch this short video from Made to Flourish, “Work is Beautiful: The Florist Story.”
We may not always be able to see the impact of aligning ourselves with God’s purposes in our work. Our days may not always feel worthy of a “video story.” However, when we embrace a sense of calling–regardless of our current work assignment–we see and embrace the bigger picture of how God is using our lives through our work–even in small acts of faithfulness, justice and service.
If you’re feeling discouraged in your work, or want to be intentional about identifying how your work connects to God’s purposes in the world, we recommend the following resources:
This is where you can find the sermons and extra resources from our 2016 sermon series on work.
Network and resources focused on equipping the church to integrate faith, work and economic wisdom.
One of the most thorough and yet readable treatments of a biblical understanding of work. I recommend this book more than any other for those wanting a deeper understanding of how our faith should affect and be integrated with our work.
Kingdom Calling by Amy Sherman
A compelling and inspiring book on the topic of aligning our work with God’s mission in the world.
The Call by Os Guiness
This book does an excellent job of addressing the idea of “calling” versus “assignment” that Kayla touched on at the end of her sermon.