Don’t Despise Hard Work
2 Thessalonians 3:10

One of the endearing lessons my father taught me was the value of hard work. From the age of twelve, I was out with him on Saturdays, most Christmas breaks, and during the summers working as he helped build houses around the Chicagoland area.

I climbed through crawl spaces, up into attics, on roofs and ladders and did all kinds of construction jobs. It was never my favorite thing to do and I often wondered why other kids got to sit home and play games while I had to sweat in the heat, freeze in the cold, and get dirty.

But I’m glad my father brought me to the job site. I’m glad he made me work. Dad was teaching me something I will never forget. Work is an essential part of life. Work is a gift from God. And work is how you make money so you can support your self and your family.

This is not a topic you will hear preached often in youth groups and on Sunday morning, but it’s every bit as biblical as prayer, Bible reading, and evangelism. Work was created by God as a gift and given to man before Adam sinned. Work is not a result of sin. Sin has only made work harder.

Sometimes I run into Christian young people who are all on fire for Jesus, love to share their faith, read their Bibles and can recite the Apostle’s Creed. But I see something missing. A work ethic. Its’ as if we’re so in love with Jesus that we don’t have to work anymore.

The problem is that working hard is part of following Jesus. Jesus himself worked in his father’s carpentry shop. I’m guessing it wasn’t easy. I’m guessing there were long days. I’m guessing Jesus sweat and pushed and grunted.

There is a certain joy in working, in knowing that you glorified God with your hands and now you are able to receive the fruit of your labor—money. Money isn’t inherently evil, in fact, money is good. It’s a way to reward hard work in society. The love of money can be evil, when money replaces God as your object of affection.

So I want to challenge Christian young people. Don’t despise work. Don’t be lazy. Don’t make your parents pay for everything. Pursue your calling with hard work. Be ready to step up and use your hands and your head and your heart to produce something that will gain a reward, both here and in Heaven. 

Daniel Darling is an author, pastor, and public speaker. His latest book is Crash Course, Forming a Faith Foundation for Life. Visit him on Facebook by clicking here, follow on him on Twitter at twitter.com/dandarling, or check out his website: danieldarling.com