Bible Reading: Genesis 2:1-25, II Timothy 2:3-7
Children are amazing and funny at times. When you are doing a chore or trying to get something done in the house you find this child around you who wants to do what you are doing, carry what you are carrying help with the dishes or cook with so much enthusiasm or begging and crying for you to let them work. A few years down the line and they are a little grown, you are now begging them to do what they were so excited to do.
Sometimes we can be about our work like that, one minute we are excited to get on the new job or excited to finally be in school. A few weeks or months later we want to quit. But work is God’s Idea and ideal. He created work.
And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Genesis 2:2 NKJV
It was told that God worked and rested on the seventh day from all He has done. As humans, we were created to work and our work involves putting effort into the work God has already done to produce and experience His beauty.
So the Lord God took the man [He had made] and settled him in the Garden of Eden to cultivate and keep it. Genesis 2:15. AMP
In Apostle Paul’s second letter to Timothy, the Apostle gives Timothy three templates on how to go about His work as a faithful leader in the Church. As we go about what we do I believe the same instructions also speak to us on how we can be faithful in whatever work God puts in our hands.
He admonished him to work as a soldier.
…..as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. II Timothy 2:3-4 NKJV
A soldier is enlisted to be engaged in a battle to please the one who enlists him. Wherever we find ourselves to work, we must bear in mind that God has called us to do this. Our 9 am to 5 pm or 6 am to 11 pm (if you are in Lagos), remote job, volunteering or schooling as an act of worship to please Him.
Pleasing God would lead to pleasing our employers and getting the returns required of us Bondservants, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in sincerity of heart, as to Christ; not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart. Ephesians 6:5-6 NKJV
Another template the Apostle gave Timothy is that he should work as an athlete.
The veteran Apostle said, “An athlete who doesn’t play by the rules will never receive the trophy, so remain faithful to God!” II Timothy 2:5 TPT
Athletes compete and in competing they strive to be better by doing the extra at what they do to win a medal. With the work that God has placed in our hands and being faithful stewards of it are we doing it with excellence? Are we making the most out of it? We must not just be like
the unfaithful servant in the parable of the talents in Matthew 25 that didn’t maximise his potential. What courses do we need to take or conferences do we need to attend to be better at what we do? Sometimes it is that certificate to earn a skill to do your job better or that course you need to study better to get a good grade.
Lastly, he encouraged Timothy to be a hardworking farmer.
[It is] the hard-working farmer [who labors to produce] who must be the first partaker of the fruits. II Timothy 2:6 AMPC
I believe being a hardworking farmer goes beyond just toiling it involves working right. A farmer must till the soil, plant the seeds, water his plants and harvest. He must be doing all of these at the right time. Faithfulness with work would also look like not being lazy or sloppy with work.
The lazy man says, “There is a lion in the road! A fierce lion is in the streets!”
As a door turns on its hinges,
So does the lazy man on his bed.
The lazy man buries his hand in the bowl; It wearies him to bring it back to his mouth. Proverbs 26:13-15 NKJV
Are we doing all that we do with work or at work at the right time? Are we punctual? Are we resting when we should? Do we see things through? Sometimes work doesn’t work because we are not working right or working smart. Faithfulness with work would look like not being lazy or sloppy with work. Remembering that God has called us to work or called us to a vocation, we are encouraged that as soldiers, we work from a place of victory in which Jesus has worked for us by dying for us. As athletes, we win at work because Jesus ran His race towards the cross and won. By being hardworking farmers, we do not work with our power or strength but through the grace – His empowerment which Christ has given us.
In prayer today
Think over these things I am saying [understand them and grasp their application], for the Lord will grant you full insight and understanding in everything. II Timothy 2:7 AMPC
Tell God to give you an understanding of what He would have you do to be faithful as you go about with work.
Oreoluwa volunteers with the Bible Engagement team at Sycamore