Posted by: Brian Musser | April 15, 2014

God’s Work Gives Our Work Meaning

Work-Ship – Week One:  God Works – Day Six: God’s Work Gives Meaning to Our Work

Yesterday, we established that because God’s work is continuing our work here and now is done in the context of God’s work.  God’s work provides the context for our work.  God’s work gives meaning to our work.  Solomon in the philosophically heavy book of Ecclesiastes looks at this issue from the negative aspect.  Without God being involved and God providing the joy, our work is completely meaningless.

Ecclesiastes 2:18-26 (HCSB)

I hated all my work that I labored at under the sun because I must leave it to the man who comes after me. And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will take over all my work that I labored at skillfully under the sun. This too is futile. So I began to give myself over to despair concerning all my work that I had labored at under the sun. When there is a man whose work was done with wisdom, knowledge, and skill, and he must give his portion to a man who has not worked for it, this too is futile and a great wrong. For what does a man get with all his work and all his efforts that he labors at under the sun? For all his days are filled with grief, and his occupation is sorrowful; even at night, his mind does not rest. This too is futile.
There is nothing better for man than to eat, drink, and enjoy his work. I have seen that even this is from God’s hand, because who can eat and who can enjoy life apart from Him? For to the man who is pleasing in His sight, He gives wisdom, knowledge, and joy, but to the sinner He gives the task of gathering and accumulating in order to give to the one who is pleasing in God’s sight. This too is futile and a pursuit of the wind.

Many of us hope that our work, our lifelong passion will outlive us.  Our work may be within the context of raising a family, or our work in the context of passing learning and knowledge to generations through teaching or research, or the creation of enterprises and edifices that will continue after our demise.  But we all hope that the investment of our lives outlives our lives.  We want a legacy.  However; Solomon realizes that we have very little control over that legacy.  God can and will do with our legacy what He wishes according to His plans.

Since we have seen that God continues to work, and if we wan our work to outlive our lives, if we want a legacy, the best to ensure a legacy is to intertwine our work within the continuing work of God.  God’s continuous work provides the meaning and context for our work.

How does your work fit into the plans of God?  Could you work better align with the plans of God?  Do you know enough about God’s plans to connect your work?  How could you better learn the plans of God?

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