The other day I had my blood drawn at the doctor’s office and I have to tell you how much I appreciated the phlebotomist doing her job well. I never even felt the needle go into the vein and that almost never happens! Usually I not only feel the sting of the needle but also they often have to probe with the needle to find the vein because my veins have a tendency to roll around. I guess they don’t like to be poked! There are other times in life that I greatly appreciate someone doing their job well, like when I get a haircut. No one wants to get a hap-hazard beautician cutting their hair! What about having a teacher that actually teaches a struggling child and doesn’t just pass the child on to the next class without helping them to learn, we appreciate their hard work and good job especially if we are the struggling child. Doing our jobs well is important, especially if you are a Christian. In my Sunday School class we are learning about the importance of doing our work as an act of worship to God. Now that is really been a great class for me because I sometimes need reminding that my work is still ongoing even though I am not employed. So where does this idea come from that Christians need to do a good job in their work?
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Colossians 2:13-15, (New International Version or NIV).
First of all we need to recognize who we are now in comparison to who we were before we became a Christian. We were dead but now we are alive and the Spirit of God resides in us as a testimony that we belong to Christ (Romans 8:16). Since we are God’s children then we need to act more like God and less like we used to. This involves every aspect of our lives.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them. Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged. Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism. Colossians 3:1-25, (NIV).
This passage is long I know but it is important because this passage gives many great instructions for how a Christian should conduct their behavior and their attitudes. We are to show that we are changed because God is changing our hearts and minds into perfection as He is perfect. If we do not show our behavior and attitudes as changing from bad to good or good to better then we are not growing in the Lord and the fruit we bear is not what it should be. In other words we can’t stay in the attitudes and behaviors of our old self after becoming a Christian, others need to see the change in us as well as we need to see the change ourselves. When God is at work in us then God’s attributes will be seen through us. Not only are we to be good at our job but we are also to be good wives and husbands and parents. We are to be kind and compassionate and caring as well as encouraging to others. We are to not lie to each other or to be jealous of one another. We will no longer throw angry temper fits but will learn to control our anger and to understand where it comes from and why we think it is okay to use anger as a tool to manipulate others. We need to work on our parenting skills so that we are not just leaving parenting up to only one parent or to daycare and school. We need to be responsible and take our responsibilities as important because they are important. And through all of our lives we need to give God the glory and worship Him for His goodness and mercy extended to us. After all the only reason we can change is because God is with us and in us and guiding us and helping us to change. I love the ending of this passage.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism.
God has no favorites when it comes to judgement, either you meet His criteria or you don’t! And His criteria is only one thing, that you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior! That is the good news of the entire New Testament! And when you do accept Jesus as your master then you are no longer a slave to men but to Jesus and to God and that is why your work becomes an act of worship. That is why everything that you do becomes an act of worship to God. You are no longer a lost soul of this world but a child of God and that in itself should be enough for you to begin to live a better life. I hope this helps you to see how God loves you and wants the best for you in this life as well as in eternity.