2 Thessalonians 3:13 “And as for you, brothers, never tire of doing what is right.”
Yesterday was a happy day! After a long summer our family was together again. John-Keith and Nathan made the long road trip from camp in New York State to Ohio. After being cramped in a loaded hatchback for over ten hours, the boys pulled into the school parking lot where all seven of us were reunited at Abigail’s volleyball game. It felt fantastic!
My heart swells when I think of everyone’s work ethic this summer. I have seen each of you work hard. I have heard positive comments from others regarding your willingness to complete even menial tasks in a timely manner and with a pleasant attitude (waitressing, cleaning, yard work, and food delivery to a bunch of hungry girls, to name a few). This pleases me!
But I would like to encourage you to continue to do what is right. Now that you are starting the next thing – school for some, jobs for others – it could be easy to slip into a pattern of laziness. Doing well in the past doesn’t always guarantee success in the future. The hardest jobs to do are those that must be self-motivated.
It is tempting to think we are owed something by the world – the “I’ve worked hard and now someone else should serve me” mentality. But this is not the kind of attitude God wants us to have. Paul warns against laziness in 2 Thessalonians 3 and harshly commands us to keep away from every brother who is idle.
Laziness is a sin as well as a fast track to other problems. For example, those who aren’t busy may become busybodies. Busybodies devour and share gossip. Gossip leads to hurt feelings at best and broken relationships at worst. Besides, by being lazy you cheat yourself of the many benefits to working hard, especially the resultant good feeling about yourself.
The Apostle Paul, in his letter to the Thessalonians, shares a personal example of a Godly work ethic. Though he and his missionary team had every right to expect others to pay their way, they worked day and night laboring and toiling so that they would not be a burden to anyone. They were willing to work hard to relieve a financial burden from some and to ensure that there would be no misunderstanding of the gospel as a free gift from God.
In another letter Paul encourages the Ephesian believers (4:28) not to steal but to work hard with their hands so they will have something to share with others.
I am very grateful that each of you has developed a good work ethic. I love to see you work hard at the things God has given you to do with a positive attitude. I, along with the Apostle Paul, encourage you not to tire of doing what is right. Don’t ever let laziness sneak into your life!
Now, who is going to take out the trash tonight? 🙂