I recently had the privilege of hearing circuit court judge, David Turner, speak at All Souls Langham Place, London on the topic, ?Is work a four-letter word??
After an entertaining and provocative introduction to both the theology and reality of our experience of work, Turner considers Ecclesiastes 2:17-26. ?Here?s what he says about the ambivalence with which we approach work: ??
?Some of us find work satisfying, rewarding. self-defining. ?Others find it exhausting, frustrating and soul-crushingly oppressive ? we long for our work to be significant and meaningful but it can stress us out, it can bore us terminally, and it can leave us miserable. ?We all know people ? who have achieved an incredible standard of living but who have an appalling quality of life. A life of long days and short nights and shrunken relationships.??
Turner outlines 5 key points that he suggests define a Christian approach to work:
- Christian work is?creation-fulfilling????Too many Christians begrudge their work when they should be reveling in the fact that God is using them in whatever small a part to fulfill his purposes.??
- Christian work is?excellence-pursuing????Christians pursue excellence in their work not primarily because they want to impress their boss or because they are working hard to get to a better pay level but because they are working first for Christ ? that adds a new significance to every task we perform even if it is never recognized.?
- Christian work is?holiness-reflecting?-???in work, we reflect the character of God?
- Christian work is?redemption-displaying????? a Christian in work, any work, is overwhelmed by their indebtedness to grace?
- Christian work is?mission-advancing?-??Work done by the disciples of Jesus should be done with a view towards the Great Commission and our fulfilling of that commission ? as workplace Christians we are everywhere ? places that need to hear both the words of the Gospel and see the tangible reflection of God?s love.?
See if you can find 30 minutes to?listen to the sermon in full?? I am confident you will be challenged and encouraged.?
Murray Wright (20 July, 2013)