Work is easily one of the largest Time consumers. The combinations of “Work” in the family today is endless, especially when you add in the jobs of teenagers. Before we know it, the family is going every which direction and it can be hard to align the schedule to accommodate that family dinner. The Word of God gives us perspective on work and provides guidelines on how to approach it.
The Hebrew word for work is ‘amal meaning “wearing effort; whether of body or mind.”[i] Work is a gift meant to bring us a purpose, provision, satisfying industry. We pour our mind and body into the effort. Sometimes the rewards of work are not immediate as God makes our work “beautiful in its time.”
While work comprises our daily efforts, God has also “put eternity into man’s heart.” While men, women and children all benefit from industry, we were never meant to be so consumed with it we forget our eternal calling. God placed that eternal perspective in our hearts to ensure a balance between the temporary and enduring.
While work is necessary and intended to be rewarding, we were made for so much more than this life. Work cannot be our sole focus – or soul focus. The family relationships God has entrusted to us should not suffer from a schedule weighted down by disproportional work.
When it comes to the years of raising teens, work is an excellent training ground for them as they step into adulthood and take on the mantle of providing for their needs. It changes the family picture of what time together looks like. As parents, we help them learn a healthy balance between rejoicing in the blessing of work while keeping that eternal perspective.
Should you make an adjustment to the column of Work? Only you can know. Maybe you already know what your family needs but the options are not available. Or maybe those decisions are not yours to make.
I encourage your to ask God about the role of Work in your family. Is He calling you to more of it? Less of it? A change of pace? A change of heart?
God moves and provides behind the scenes long before we see it. Prayer begins that process. As hard as we work, in the end God is our Provider and He opens the doors we need. If there is no door, He creates one. Remember our post on Hope? God’s answer to you is always: Yes, Not right now, or I have something better. Put your Hope in him and listen to His direction before you make adjustments to your Family Time Chart.
I want to hear from YOU! How do you define work? How has it differed from season to season in your life? What about your family’s work life? If you could encourage someone here about faith and work, what would you say?
Read Ecclesiastes 3:9-15,Matthew 6:24-34 and Proverbs 16:1-3.
Father, though I plan my career and seek to provide for my family I recognize “The plans of [my] heart belong to [me], but the answer of the tongue is from [You].” Though my ways seem pure to me, I will “commit [my] work to the LORD, and [hope that] your plans will be established.” Heavenly, Father, give me wisdom for healthy boundaries. As we make our plans for work, align us with your purposes and establish our steps. I submit our work to you in Jesus’ name, amen.
**Tip: Not sure how to hear God’s voice? Personally, I often ask for Him for an answer and then to give me confirmation. Usually I sense the answer through scripture reading and prayer, then I wait for that sacred echo. The random comments and phrases that pop up out of nowhere and confirm what He is speaking.
[i] Strongs Exhaustive Concordance