The first Monday of September is designated as Labor Day in the United States. Each time I think of this holiday, I try to reflect on the meaning of my labor or work. I recently asked a high school student what her plans were when she finished high school. She didn’t hesitate at all when she told me what she wanted to do in life.
I want to get a job that is a lot of fun where I can make a lot of money.
Unfortunately, this is the mindset of a lot of people when it comes to their goals for the future and work. They want to do something that they really enjoy as long as it pays well. One person has said that work is now defined as something that people do that enables them to consume. The more they can consume, the happier they will be.
Many other people worship their work. They put as much time and energy as possible in their work; even if it takes away from spending time with their families. Many times this group of people are called workaholics because their work consumes almost all of their waking hours. Their identity is their work. They seem to be saying, I am what I do!
This is a far cry from how God wants His people to view work. Christians have lost the idea that work is to be a vocation to which God calls them to serve Him and others. In addition to the fact that most Christians see work as simply a job to pay the bills and accumulate as much stuff as possible, their children and youth are taking this shortcoming to an all new level. Recent studies indicate that the majority of millennials actually prefer to live in a communistic or socialistic society where the government is supposed to meet all their needs.
Author and pastor, Tim Keller, gives us a warning about not viewing work as something we do to glorify God.
You will not have a meaningful life without work, but you will lose yourself if you say work is the meaning of your life.
Whether you are celebrating Labor Day somewhere in the United States or you are at work somewhere around the world, I want to challenge you to see your work as something God has called you to do in order to steward some aspect of His creation. Let’s make sure we do our work for His glory and the good of others.