We celebrate Labor Day this Monday, September 6th. The word labor means work. Many people do not have to work that day, and you have a day off from school too. Labor Day is always observed on the first Monday in September. It was created by the labor movement in the late 1800’s and became a federal holiday in 1894. Labor Day celebrates the work that Americans do by giving them a day’s vacation. Labor Day has also come to symbolize the end of summer for many Americans and is celebrated with parties, parades, and athletic events. But have you ever wondered about what the Bible says about labor and work? I did this past week.
God said working was a good thing. In fact, God was the first to do work when He created the world. He worked hard for six days and rested on the seventh day. Genesis 1:31 says that when God viewed His labor, He called it “very good.” Psalm 19 says that God reveals Himself to the world by His work; the earth shows the glory of God and proclaims His handiwork. Since we are created in God’s image, God wants us to work with Him to make the earth a better place for everyone. We should not be lazy and do our work not only to help ourselves but others too. Adults must work to provide food, clothing, and housing for themselves and their families. That is as it should be, God tells us. We should be proud of the work that we do just like God was proud of His work forming the earth and all that’s in it. As children, your work is going to school to get a good education, so you can get a good job later in life. You probably have chores around your house you must do, as well. Do those things to the best of your abilities, so to honor God and prepare yourselves for adulthood. Colossians 3:23-24 from the Living Bible says, “Work hard and cheerfully at all you do, just as though you were working for the Lord and not merely for your boss, remembering that it is the Lord Christ who is going to pay you, giving you your full portion of all He owns. He is the one you are really working for.”
Let’s say a prayer together. Dear Lord, thank You for all the work that You have done to make this earth and us good. Let us continue Your good works to make it a place where we all can live in safety and peace, so everyone has enough food, water, houses, and medicine. Bless us as we work every day to make this happen. In Your holy name we pray, Amen.
Ann Moody is a retired pastor, formerly of the Wilkesville First Presbyterian Church and the Middleport First Presbyterian Church. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.