To work

Click here to listen to this 15-minute message. Or watch the YouTube video below, or read the summary text that follows.

One of the impacts of COVID-19 has been to dramatically increase unemployment rates. We see this in both the developed world (e.g., the USA) and the developing world (e.g., South Africa). By ‘work’ I don’t necessarily mean employment (in the sense of being employed and paid by someone else) or even to have a job (in the sense of doing something that generates an income). ‘Work’ includes productive activities, such as volunteering or raising a family. So, I am using ‘work’ in an inclusive and flexible way.

Our current challenging context should prompt us to think about work from a Christian perspective. I suggest three key points about work.

  1. We were created to work. The creation story in Genesis 1:28 and 2:15 emphasises work. God created humankind to work. Specifically, to work as labourers, gardeners, farm workers. Work is thus bound up in the DNA of humanity, and when we cannot work, this can create difficulties for us. This is part of the threat of the COVID lockdowns – it is not good for people not to work.
  2. Work is about caring for (stewarding) the things of God. Genesis 2:15 emphasises that Adam was placed into the garden (probably the Garden of Eden, which can be thought of as the jewel of God’s natural creation) to tend and work it. We often refer to this as ‘stewardship’ – that the things of God are entrusted to us to (on loan) to care for. And to make productive. The garden is intended to be a well-cared for, creative and productive space.
  3. We work for God, not people. In Ephesians 6:7, Paul says to workers, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people.” To be a Christian at work is not so much to publicise your faith, to hold prayer meetings or to evangelise, as much as it is to do your job with the exceptional devotion and energy that comes form working for God.

I encourage us to think about work at this present time and to:

  1. Consider how we help people who are out of work to have work.
  2. Do our own work – if we are blessed to be able to work – as if for God.

There is so much more I want to say about Christian perspectives on work! One day I will write a book!

Featured image from: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/nov/23/world-ploughing-championships-no-till-farming

3 thoughts on “To work

  1. Genevieve Geekie says:

    Mmmm; families without an income 😰

    All five my children and their spouses have had to forgo at least 1 income. Probably the worst affected is my younger son, Duncan; his restaurant has had to close down, and his wife was paid one-third of her salary last month — and that’s IT.

    A sad syndrome echoed in millions of South African homes — and homes abroad, to a lesser extent.

    How are you, and your family, my dear Adrian?

    Love (entwined with such happy memories)

    Gen

    On Thu, Apr 30, 2020 at 8:18 AM Reflections of God’s Love wrote:

    > Adrian van Breda posted: “Click here to listen to this 15-minute message. > Or watch the YouTube video below, or read the summary text that follows. > One of the impacts of COVID-19 has been to dramatically increase > unemployment rates. We see this in both the developed world (e.g.,” >

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is indeed a very tough time Gen. I’m sad to hear of the pressure your family is experiencing. We pray for God’s protection and for release from the grasp of this virus. Much love, Adrian

      Like

  2. Thank you Adrian for your sermon.

    Liked by 1 person

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