Saturday, September 02, 2006

work and rest Work. No matter who we are or what we "do," we all work in some shape, form, or fashion. I go back "to work" this week--after enjoying two months on "no work." By God's grace, I have always tried to apply this verse to my jobs: "Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ" (Colosians 3:23-24). It is not easy to work heartily when I get no credit or, worse yet, someone else gets the credit for my hard work. It is not easy to work heartily when I am frustrated with my boss, my colleagues, or my students. It is not easy to work heartily when I am burned out or sick. But, still I must focus on the fact that I am to work as for the Lord and not for men. However, thankfully, most days it is very easy to work heartily because, as I have said before, I love my job. To be paid to do what I love is a blessing! How great is our God! I am starting to think that part of "work as for the Lord," also means honoring his priorities and teachings, rather than just an excuse which allows me to be caught up in prefectionism and self-rightousness. Which means, I also have been thinking about how and when to say enough is enough. What is the balance between being the best teacher I can be and working as unto the Lord on one hand and knowing when to stop, to rest, and to enjoy and participate in the other things of life and living on the other hand? I don't know the answer. But, I do know that I want to wrestle with it more. In the next few days I am going to prayerfully set some goals and objectives for the coming year (for teachers--"the new year" is in the fall). I already know that one of these objectives will be to learn more about rest and practice observing it. I read recently (but can't remember where) that the day before observing rest is a day of preparation for the day of rest. This day of prep led to anticipation for the day of rest to come. The Bible is a story of anticipation--waiting for the Savior to come and waiting for him to come again. Partly, I want to observe a day of rest because God thought it was a good thing to do after working and because I want to practice anticipation. I want to be reminded on a weekly basis that I am (supposed to be) waiting eagerly for the Savior to come again. I guess one of the beautiful things about work is that we get to anticipate and enjoy rest. :) This post was submitted to the Carnival of Beauty sponsored by Sallie at A Gracious Home. This week the...

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