Honoring Our Work
On May 1st some churches honor Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus. Spiritual writer Joyce Rupp in her devotional Inviting God In describes him as a “quiet, humble carpenter.” It was not so much what he did for a living but how and why he worked. Scholars believe he was at least 10 years older than Mary and died before Jesus’ ministry began. He showed his true character by caring for Mary and his family through confusion, sorrow, and struggles. He knew that he had a special task to perform. He is considered the saint of building construction or selling of houses.
We hear nothing about Joseph after the time Jesus was 12 years old and was lost and found in the temple. But we honor Joseph for the way he lived his life, working with the talents he had been given as well as fulfilling his familial responsibilities.
Martin Buber wrote that “it is not the nature of the task, but its consecration that is the vital thing.”
Too often we judge ourselves or others by what we do rather than by the attitude with which we do our work. Work is an opportunity to use our talents to serve others. Do we put our heart into the work as if we were doing it for God? Do we care for our minds and our bodies so that we are ready to serve? Do we volunteer our talents to serve God and other people? Is the quality of our work a worthy offering to God?
Let us unite with Joseph this month and approach our work with gratitude for the gifts we have been given. Let us consecrate our work to God by following the example of Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus.
Sister Joyce Rupp offers this prayer:
Giver of Gifts
I consecrate to you this day all that I am, all that I have and all that I do. I promise to use whatever talents I have for your honor and for the well-being of others.
May your springtime be blessed with gratitude for your talents and fruitful work.
Pastor Linda Miles
This excerpt is from the March Fisherman Newsletter.
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