A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Wednesday, May 13, 2020
The Donegal Creek Canada Goose gosslings are getting bigger.
Looks like this may be a family gathering!
Click to enlarge
"Sermon On The Rocks"
Message summary: As you work or get back to work ask the Lord to reveal to you the dignity of your work and apply your work skills with a spirit of diligence.
Listen to this message on your audio player.
“Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does” (Ephesians 6:7,8). “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving” (Colossians 3:23,24).
Yesterday I was speaking to a business leader about the challenges of ramping up the work load at his company. As an "essential" business his company has been working throughout this pandemic. They project an increase in their work load the next several months and he has the duty of managing this.
In other cases people are slowly returning to work after a lengthy period of being off due to the coronavirus. Alarm clocks have been shut off, demands of our schedule have lessened significantly, contributing to a large population who have become rather lethargic. They will have to build up their stamina and even restoke their will to get back to work!
We question current government policies that may very well lessen the incentive to work and decrease personal responsibility. (Actually it already is. This morning I talked to an HVAC service tech friend who shared how many just don't want to work now and can make more money not working.) Many of us feared this would happen, but after he shared of this reality my mind traveled to one of the first sermons my brother, Pat, preached back in his Bible College days.
He is now retired after serving various churches for some 40 years. Following high school he became a Christian while serving the military in Europe. Upon his discharge he immediately enrolled in Bible College to prepare for ministry where I caught up with him two years later at the same college. Coincidentally, today is Pat’s birthday!
He had the GI bill which paid for his education but since he still wanted to work he chose to work on a college work crew. He recalls one of his first sermons, as the "Sermon on the Rocks", I suppose a take-off of Christ’s slightly more famous, "Sermon on the Mount". He was working on a rockpile and noticed several of the other workers slacking so he began to preach his message, exhorting them to be diligent in their work and thus the "sermon on the rocks"! That's a message that needs repeating today!
The Scriptural teaching in our daily texts is a call to diligence in work. Many have a slovenly attitude toward their work, doing as little as they can. Today’s texts are teaching from the Apostle Paul to Christian slaves but this principle can easily be applied to all secular work and to the work of ministry. Consider the phrases, "Serve wholeheartedly" and “Work at it with all your heart".
In our work responsibilities we should indeed serve wholeheartedly. Christians should be an example of diligence! As part of their testimony they should be among the most exemplary workers any company has. What kind of employee are you? I encourage you to consider the end use of the product you are making or service you are providing and the blessing it may be to many people.
We should apply these principles in our work ethic toward our employers. In whatever we do, our work should be "as to the Lord". I like the pulpit study notes on this verse: “Every mean and hard task is dignified and sweetened by the thought of being done for Christ, and the commonest work must be done with the zeal and thoroughness that His service demands.”
As you work or get back to work ask the Lord to reveal to you the dignity of your work and apply your work skills with a spirit of diligence.
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, when we’re tempted to be halfhearted in our vocational work or find ourselves bored by monotonous repetition help us to find creative means that will make us even more productive and content in our work assignments. May our conduct and attitude reflect values set forth in Scripture. Prompt us to be faithful in prayer for our employers, supervisors, co-workers, and the business in which we serve. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
This verse reminds us that we’re in service for the Lord rather than man, implying that our service is actually rendered to the One higher than “man”. If we murmur, cut corners, or display a bad attitude toward our co-workers and administration we cast a bad light on our testimony. On the other hand if we show diligence and joy in our work, kingdom principles are visible to others as they witness character building in our lives. Either attitude that we display will spread to those around us, making the workplace environment either miserable and unproductive or pleasant and productive.
Should you feel that you are not being rewarded adequately for your hard labor here on earth, remember that the underlying and overall motivation for our diligent labor is the future inheritance we will receive "from the Lord". And what is that inheritance? It’s being promoted to heaven where there is no more sorrow, sin, or suffering. Promotions from our workplace pales in comparison to our future eternal home that can "never perish, spoil or fade".
May the joy of the Lord accompany you in your work today. Be sure not to keep it to yourself; spread it to others around you!
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
Stephen and Pat Weber
This photo was taken in the early eighties when men were getting permanents! Does anyone else remember that or were you a part of that crowd as well? I wouldn't have gone to the beauty shop for this short-lived fad, but I had my live-in hairdresser do it for me. Of course I'm talking about my wife, Brooksyne, who was a licensed hairdresser at the time. This photo was taken at our sister's wedding in 1980. I am holding my Nikolta SLR camera I used for many years. I would have been in my mid-twenties when this photo was taken. Pat is about 8 years older than me.
"I've Been Saved" Video Selah What a tremendous blessing salvation is! Then the powerful keeping power of Christ.
Part of the cycle of life in our agricultural area includes applying organic fertilizer on the recently harvested rye field across the road from our home. This large farm is using a modern method known as the drag line which uses a huge hose to transport the waste material from the farm to the spreader. In the next several weeks we will see the corn planted. But in the meantime we won't take deep breaths outside for a couple days.
Our neighbor Chris is also preparing to spread manure using a slightly older method!
Late yesterday afternoon I walked back to the field directly behind us to see the huge pump used to propel the manure through the hoses. Since it's not our land I rarely walk across this field to view the back of our house. Our dogwood tree is transforming from pink to green but still shows a slight pink in this photo.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
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