Six Days You Shall Labor

Be Inspired!

Bible Reading: Genesis 2:1-15 

Six days you shall labor and do all your work” (Exodus 20:9).

I drove forty-five minutes to a jobsite where I worked about eight hours. My work consisted of designing and building an outdoor brick fireplace at the east end of a recently built pavilion. I enjoyed the beauty of the day, some fresh mountain air, and the strenuous exercise. The work was satisfying.  

At the beginning of time, God designed and planted a garden eastward in Eden and put the first two people, Adam and Eve, in this garden to care for it. From the very beginning, God created man to experience meaning and joy through labor. Not only is work a command of God; it is also a blessing from God.    

The reason we find meaning and satisfaction in working is because God created us similar to Himself. God designed and built the universe, and ever since, man also has been designing and building and ruling upon the earth. We could say that this urge to imagine and build is built into our DNA.  

However, man disobeyed God and ate of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, and now work is much more difficult. God said to the first Adam, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: “Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread.” 

But even though tilling the soil, designing and building homes, and ruling upon the earth is much more difficult, it is nevertheless still satisfying and can even be therapeutic. Often those who have consistent work patterns are healthier in body and mind.  

What motivates us to work is also important. We should work as unto the Lord. If we work only because it is necessary to put food on the table or just to pay bills, then we may try to avoid work when we have extra resources. But if we realize that we are working to please our Creator God who also works, then we should find deep satisfaction in our labor. We are working not only to provide for ourselves and those in need around us, but also to honor God.      

 

~Harold R Troyer    

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