The Value of Hard Work
Why should we work hard? Isn’t it enough just to “get by”? We all wrestle with this in some area or another. Judah squares us up on this question.
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31
In the Owens house, the definition of hard work is taught through the ever constant example set by our father. Often times I find myself asking how I can become more like my father in this area, but as I sat down to write on this topic I realized the solution isn’t in asking how can I be more hard working… but instead by asking why should I be?
1 Corinthians 10:31 tells us the biblical heart behind hard work is our answer to why we should do it… so our effort will bring glory to God. For most of my life I would have said my father’s hard working example stems from grit, guts, and sheer willpower (a bit like a John Wayne character). However, it is now obvious to me the source of his perseverant work ethic is rooted in his understanding of scripture and his desire to glorify God.
To ensure our hard work is glorifying God we sometimes need to cut straight to the core of our motives. Here are two questions and scriptures we can use to make sure we are working hard for the right reasons:
- Who am I doing this for?
(My ego? Others? Or for God and His glory) I never question who my father is working hard for because of one main reason: he does so unconditionally. He gives the same maximum effort no matter who and what it’s for, or when and where it’s needed. We see this unrestricted characteristic in the way Christ loves, and when I see my father work in this way it gives me confidence that he is “working with all [his] heart, as working for the Lord”.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, Colossians 3:23
2. Would I give the same effort if no one is looking?
This is often the true self test. Only you know what you’re doing when no one else is watching… kind of. Scripture tells us God not only sees all, but he also cares about everything we do. If God can see everything we do, then we should do everything in a manner pleasing to Him. If I am only willing to work hard when people are watching, then my focus must not be in the right place.
Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. Hebrews 4:13
By understanding why we should be hard working, we can then better appreciate its value, an eternal value far outweighing any earthly value.
Where in your life can you bring glory to God this by working hard for His glory?