Do you work for God or for yourself? In the reading of this psalm, if you work for yourself, you are working in vain. Since the beginning of humanity, it has been God’s intent for us to work. Right away He set Adam to work caring for the garden. As ones created in the image of God, we are made as creators and laborers. Our work is for a purpose and that purpose is greater than ourselves.
When we do our work apart from or without God, it is in vain. When our work becomes addictive or compulsive or all-consuming, it is far from God. On the other extreme, when our work is lazy or shoddy or resentful, this too is far from God. When our labor is all about us and cares nothing for God or those around us, then it is easy for it to become these bad things.
Instead our work must be done for God. The purpose of our labor needs to be aligned with God. On a basic level our work must provide for ourselves and for our loved ones. But it must also bless those around us. Part of this idea again goes back to how we work. When we are joyful, hard-working, honest, encouraging, supportive, and so on, we bless those we work with. The other part is that the fruits of our work become the tangible ways in which we bless those in need.
For some, our ‘work’ is school or what one does in retirement. The goal is still the same: to honor and bring glory to God through how we ‘work’. Each day may God and His purposes be the focus of our labor. Each day may we bless others through our labor and the fruit of our hands.
Scripture reference: Psalm 127