Today marks the final post in reference to this Summer’s reading selection, Every Good Endeavor, by Timothy Keller. I chose this book because we often get sucked into the minutiae and drudgery of our every day work. I see this time and again, the face of pointless despair or the burnt-out, haggard visage from work. When we work for the one (ourselves or a boss), we stop working for the One (God). And when we do this, we can’t help but feel demoralized or weary. We can’t help but feel, “What’s the point?”
However, when we understand that the true work has already been done for us, only then can we begin to understand what our work can mean to others. Jesus was the true example of work. He was the ultimate living sacrifice and the ultimate form of God’s mercy for our salvation (his crowning achievement). Keller describes it this way, “When the extent and depth of Jesus’s passion for you fully dawns on your heart, it will generate passion for the work he has called you uniquely to do in the world. When you realise what he as done to rescue you, your pride and envy begin to disappear because you don’t need to get your self-worth from being richer, cooler, more powerful, or more comfortable than others.”
We don’t have to feel any of these corrosive emotions when we know what God has done for us and we can start “serving the work” rather than be a “servant to the work.” It changes EVERYTHING.
Jesus already did all the hard stuff for you and when you realize this, you’ll be able to explore a freedom from your work and within your work. “You are adopted into God’s family, so you already have your affirmation. You are justified in God’s sight, so you have nothing to prove. You have been saved through a dying sacrifice, so you are free to be a living one. You are loved ceaselessly, so you can work tirelessly in response to a quiet inner fullness.” You can work (no matter where you work) for God, because God has already worked for you.
Jesus is the only boss who will not drive you into the ground, because his work for you is finished. The work under the work has been satisfied by the Son, allowing you to do your work differently, better, and with more resolve. When you know for whom you work and the reason for why you work, suddenly, work becomes much more satisfying. Your audience of One is God, and therefore your work becomes very important. Not for money, not for glory, but all for God.