Well, isn’t that how life works?
Today is my first day back to work in the actual office since all the new guidelines with COVID-19 went into effect. My coworkers and I have really adjusted to our new and shiny “work-at-home” lifestyle. I very quickly became comfortable in my new form. I can assure you getting up earlier this morning to keep up my normal, morning routine didn’t feel like doing the right thing for my body, mind, OR soul.
Nevertheless, I made it into the office and, if I’m being honest with myself, the change of pace isn’t all bad. It’s nice to see other human beings again. Whenever I arrived at my desk, I noticed a few things that my boss gifted us with to commemorate our return to normalcy. One of those gifts is a small notebook that bears the inspiring quote, “Good things come to those who HUSTLE.”
No doubt a play-off of the more popular quote, “Good things come to those who wait.”
The meaning was not lost on me. I understand that my employer (and probably yours too!) wants to inspire my coworkers and me to have the best work ethic we can muster. Now, neither quote is from the Bible; however, if I had to pick either the “hustle” or “wait” variation when it comes to working, I would have to go with my employer’s hustle version of the quote. The Bible tells me that whatever I do I should work at it with my whole heart as if I am working directly for the Lord, rather than people. (Col. 3:23)
We have a problem though if we try and apply this same quote to what matters most in the world. As Christians, we believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. It’s the sacrifice that Jesus chose so that we could once again be connected to the Father. We can’t afford though to apply this same thought of “good things” for the ones “who hustle” to our Christian walk.
Sin separated us from God and we lost our ability to have a relationship with Him. Christ’s sacrifice is what brings us back to the Garden. It reconciles us with the Father and lets us walk out a real relationship with Him.
What we can’t do is just reduce our faith down to the works that I do to get into right standing with God. This is the work mentality and it reveals the true heart position that we have. I go to work and I work at it with all my heart but I don’t need to have a relationship with my boss in order to do well at my job. I don’t need to know them on a personal level. The same can be true for our Christian life if we aren’t careful. We can check all the church boxes without pursuing a relationship with the Lord. We can make it to the earliest Sunday service, bring a mean hashbrown casserole to the church potluck, and attend every small group meeting our local church offers but we might not be striving to know the one that we do all that for.
We know that Jesus said the greatest commandment is to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. It’s the GREATEST commandment! If we love Him, we will want to have a relationship with Him and know Him more and more every, single day.
Should our life look different if we are Christians? Yes. Should we have good works in our life? Absolutely. But these things should flow out as a byproduct of the relationship we have with our Father.
1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.Ephesians 3:1-9 (NIV)
I encourage you to spend time with the Lord today. Read His word and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal His wisdom and truth to you. If we want to look different than the world around us, it starts when we really seek God with our whole heart. He wants to know you!