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 (NIV)
Where I work there is an oft-uttered rhetorical question that makes its way from the lips of my colleagues to the ears of anyone who has happened to leave his or her office door open.
"Working hard, or hardly working?"
I usually respond with a light chuckle, saying "working hard, of course!"
As a Christian, I believe my work ethic should be aligned with Paul's words to the church at Colosse. Everything I do is done with the Lord in mind. Whether I'm filling out my timecard according to our ethics policies, interacting with clients over the phone or chatting in the hall with my co-workers, I know that I need to maintain an attitude of servitude and humility.
There are times in the workplace environment when putting this Christ-like attitude into practice isn't easy. When the stress level builds, my first response to a situation can be selfish or defensive. On more than one occasion I have allowed my sinful nature and ambitious drive to overtake my desire to maintain a gentle and quiet spirit. Fortunately, the Holy Spirit steps in and reminds me that my own ambitions and the rewards I may seek here on earth are nothing compared what God has to offer for serving Him.
When I'm hard at work at my desk--scheduling environmental assessments, drawing maps or calculating emissions factors--I'm not just doing it for a paycheck. I put my utmost effort into my chosen occupation because to do any less with the intelligence and capabilities God gave me, would fail to honor Him. Although there is a long-term goal (i.e. saving for retirement) associated with working a full-time schedule, the goal I'm really after is my inheritance from the Lord.
I may work for a multi-national company, but I serve the Almighty God, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Lauren, I AGREE WITH YOU 100%! This is something that needs to be retaught in our churches and to our young people just getting ready to start their first job!!!! Great article and fabulous website by the way!! God bless, Jounda