The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. Genesis 2:15
It seems like I finish a chapter in Hebrews and something comes up that I feel needs to be addressed. So today finds me writing about work. This past week I was asked when work began and my answer was in the Bible book of Genesis. Short answer but the more I thought of it the more I felt that this topic needed to be addressed once again. I believe I have written on this once before but some ideas are worth repeating. Especially when they are God’s ideas.
Work has gotten a bad reputation over the last few decades. In the West people no longer feel it is bad or unusual to let the government support them. We have made it more lucrative not to work than to work. Worse still in the US the government punishes those who seek to better themselves by cutting benefits. A few years ago there was a woman and her sons who were on welfare. One of the sons got a part time job to help with his expenses while going to college. Here we have a young man getting an education trying to better himself and what does the government do, they cut his mother’s welfare check. What was the message that it is better not to work than to work.
In 2011 the US Census Bureau reported that there were 108,592,000 people receiving some form of government assistance. That is about 36% of the population of the US. Over one third of the people living in the US are being paid by the government not to work. The real problem is that number is growing not being reduced.
God made us for work. We were meant to live in the Garden of Eden but we were also meant to tend that garden to work in it. We are not meant to be idle. Only when Adam and Eve rebelled against God did work become toil. It is toil that we think of today as work. Yet some find themselves working at job they truly enjoy and that I believe is what God intended work to be for all of us. For most of us even when we have jobs we like we are often bored by the sameness of what we do. My answer to the question of what work should be? I told my friend that I believe what God intended for us was what I feel on a nice spring day working in my yard. The weather is comfortable and as I plant my tomatoes and flowers. There is the joy of working the soil and the joy of anticipation of what is to come as the plants mature. That I believe is what God originally intended work to be not drudgery but joy.
On the New Earth we will experience work as it should be. Some of us have that experience here today in our jobs. Others of us get a glimpse of what work should be when we are doing a task we love, some of us call those tasks hobbies. Heaven will bring a lot of changes for us but one thing will remain the same, we will have work to do. The difference is that it will be work not toil and there will be joy in its accomplishment.
Have a blessed day,