A pastor friend was chatting with me a few months ago about his daughter. One day over the phone, she was moaning about her job. When she finished, my friend asked, “Who said work was supposed to be fun?”
Some people view work as a chore, others tackle it with delight, and I suspect most of us see work as a combination of both. Contrary to popular belief, the Bible does not present work as a curse. It was part of God’s plan from the beginning. In Eden, the Lord gave Adam the task of naming the animals and tending the garden. To both the man and woman, God said to start a family and superintend the earth’s creatures. Anyone who has raised kids or tried to housebreak a puppy knows that these tasks involve work.
As we observe Labor Day, we would do well to remember that Christian work falls in the same category. So often we want a smooth road, an easy job, pleasant people to deal with. But often we find potholes on the journey, the project we took on for the pastor harder than we expected, and ill-tempered folks who block every step of our way (sometimes they even serve on the same church committee).
Not that Christian work is drudgery; far from it. Serving the Lord is the deepest joy of life – but it is work, nonetheless. If we expect it to be all fun and recreation, we do not understand our mission at all. As graphics design guru Guy Kawasaki noted, “…good work is hard. And when you want to have fun, go to Disneyland.”