23 Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve. ~ Colossians 3:23-24
I thoroughly enjoy the work that I do. It is a unique and rewarding career, of which I am part of a small office that allows me to work pretty independently with a flexible schedule. In fact, it is hard to believe that I have already been there over 6 years. God has truly blessed my family through this job, as I have had great opportunities set before me.
Most jobs have some cyclical nature to them and mine is no exception. Our office is typically busier in the winter, spring, and fall, with a summer slowdown. However, the past few months have been extremely busy for me at work. By no means is that a complaint, just a reality of my current work situation. After a busy spring, I was looking forward to having a nice relaxing summer, with frequent Friday afternoon golf outings with my son and friends from church, and surprising the kids by coming home early to go to the park. Instead, due to a resignation in our department, I found myself picking up extra work, while keeping the clubs locked in the trunk of my car.
Despite our plans, God often takes unexpected life situations to teach us the truth of Scripture. In this case, I was constantly energized by the Scripture passage in Colossians (quoted at the beginning of this post). I’m thankful that God is not silent regarding the day-to-day tasks of this life on earth. And why would he be, because he cares for his children. This summer, God gave me great perspective that even though I was drawing my paycheck from my employer, it is not them whom I was ultimately serving.
To be honest, it would have been easier to “mail it in” and do the minimum to get by, or to stress out and lash out at those close to me (something I would have done in the past). But God (yes, one of those “but God” moments), gave me the grace to persevere. In fact, the greatest reward for me is hearing my wife say, “I feel like you have done a good job of balancing work and family”. I often fear allowing those two seemingly competing time and effort requirements to become unbalanced. I praise God that he gives us the victories that we need.
SIDE NOTE: Don’t get me wrong, this by no means indicates that my family and I did not have a great summer (complete with a family vacation, trips to grandparents’ houses, and a fun filled day at the Iowa State Fair). However, this probably means that our summer didn’t quite go as “we” had planned. God ways are not our ways for his ways are higher (see Isaiah 55:9).