Work is a Blessing!

by:  Pastor Jessie Arce
 
I just came back from the Philippines for the dedication of International Soo Jung Mission Center, a ministry dedicated to the Overseas Filipino Workers/Investors and to their families. For less than two weeks, my wife Mercy and I were moving from one place to another, passing well known traffic roads in Metro Manila, attending meetings after meetings, watching the construction of the center and making sure that it will be prepared on time for the dedication on June 4.
 
We even visited one sick relative of our member, travelled about 50 miles for more than 4 hours. We have to sleep in four different places just to catch up with our appointments and yet on the day of our departure, going back to our family and church in America, still a lot of things still had to be done as if we had accomplished nothing after 12 days!
 
 
I had jet lag the following day but I had to immediately mow the lawn, clean the house, pick up my daughter Hannah from the airport, and then following day (Saturday), I was at the church facility the whole day to help in our Yard Sale  community outreach event. Then I also had to assist in preparing the mission hall for a graduation party of the daughter of my ping-pong friend. Sunday is worship and high school graduation of my son Josiah and the following day, we had to make another flight going to Phoenix, Arizona for our denominations convention and meetings.

 

Work, work, work, and after doing a lot of things- more work are still waiting!!!!!

 
Am I frustrated because of work? No! Work is a blessing from God, from the very beginning (before the curse), God said “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it….” (Gen.2:6) Our Lord said “I must work the works of Him who sent me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work” (John 9:4).
 
There will be stress, pressure, times that it will be tense and sometimes exhausting while working. What do we need to do? NOT only do I need to regularly check my blood pressure and take my regular medication but most importantly-I make sure that my focus is on Giver of Work (God) and not on those work that I want to do for Him, And to this- I need to keep on reminding myself of Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God.”
 

Doing things out of our love to Him (not because we love our work) will energize, strengthen and bless us.

 
Accomplishing a lot of things is exhilarating. We feel useful. We feel successful. We feel validated. And we get good at it. It brings results and a sense of fulfillment but if we are not careful, it will turn our eyes and mind off to the Person who gave us the strength, the mind, the will, the ability and the resources to do it. We must keep on reminding ourselves that “….without Jesus, we can do nothing” (John 15:5). Doing things out of our love to Him (not because we love our work) will energize, strengthen and bless us.
 
Many of us are looking and dreaming that one day we will stop working – retire and just “enjoy” life. King Solomon who has everything in life has a great wisdom to impart to all of us- we do not need “wait” for something and then “enjoy it when it comes- We can ENJOY NOW! How? By fearing God and dealing with things before Him. The key to a meaningful and enjoyable life is “working- out of our reverence (fear) of God and dealing with things before Him. Accomplishing a lot of things can make us happy but God would like us to experience more than just happiness, He wants us to “enjoy it” and the difference between the two is “focus on the work (happiness) or focus on Him (joy).
 
Solomon was telling us that being excited and joyful about life is not only a wonderful discovery, it is a Biblical testimony. The word “better” is a Hebrew word that means to be good in the sense of having a good and pleasant smell. There is nothing that looks better or smells better than one who enjoys life. People are drawn to one who enjoys life. There is nothing better than for a person to do good. The words refer to doing things that have a good and pleasant smell to them. Let our work be a testimony of how God is working in us!
 
There is nothing better than for a person to experience many beautiful things in this life, but this will not and cannot happen in the big picture of one’s lifetime without looking at our “work as a gift from God”. There is nothing better than for a man or woman to invest one’s life in doing our work with a divine perspective.
 

Let our work be a testimony of how God is working in us!

 
Will there be “work to do” in heaven? I do not know, but if there is work (Gen.2:6) in a perfect environment (with God’s presence), it is also a possible that work is also available up there, so ENJOY YOUR WORK, FOR IT IS A GIFT FROM GOD!
 

12 I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. 13 That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. 14 I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him. – Ecclesiastes 3:12-14

About The Author
Jessie Arce is the Senior Pastor of Good Shepherd Baptist Church.  He has served in vocational ministry in the Philippines, Korea and United States. He has a heart for global missions. And he is competitive in playing ping pong. Challenger, anyone?