Week - Seven Gifts From God

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Thursday, November 28, 2013 0 comments

Something that has really stood out to me this week more than it has in the past is the number of people who have either audibly spoken or posted on social networking sites their excitement that it is a “3-day week”. I am of course referring to those who work in jobs that give them both Thursday and Friday off for the Thanksgiving holiday. But isn’t it interesting that our calendar week is defined as seven days, yet we refer to our “week” as the days we go to work? It’s almost like the other days don’t exist, or like we think those are the days we don’t have to suffer the way we do on our work days. Our culture has conditioned us to dread going to work and to always be looking forward to the next holiday, vacation, or weekend.

While our culture has conditioned us to think this way, God has not. I’d like to remind you that work is actually a GOOD thing, according to the Bible. First and foremost, work was here before sin was. “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it” (Genesis 2:15). This was not only before there was sin, but also before there were even any direct instructions from God to the man regarding what he can and cannot do. The fact that work is something we sometimes dread is a result of the curse that came after sin a little later. God said to Adam, “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life” (Genesis 3:17b). At that moment, work became something that was no longer only good, but still something we very much need. Paul says, “If a man will not work, he shall not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10b). I think it’s pretty neat that the Scriptures from so long ago pretty much describe our current view of work with astounding accuracy. We sometimes like our work, but also get worn out and dread it at times. However, we keep pushing forward because we know it is necessary to eat and pay our bills.

If you read Katie’s post from Monday or even an old one of mine from July on the word “Sabbath”, you saw that God set up a schedule of seven days for us when he created the universe in six days and then rested on the seventh. The people were told during the giving of the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20 to work for six days and rest for one, then repeat. Earlier, when they completely depended on God to supply their food needs with manna from heaven in Exodus 16, they had to gather twice as much on the sixth day because God had told them there would be none to gather on the seventh day so that they could properly observe the Sabbath, which God had instituted by resting for a day after he worked for the first six. Did God need the rest? Of course not! As I argued in that July post, “resting” also means to stop or pause for reflection. God chose to take a day to appreciate all he had done, and he wants you and me to do the same. If we don’t, we lose sight of the true gift that is each and every day we’re granted.

God did not make this week three days. He did not make every other week five days. Every seven-day period you and I experience is a week, which is a collection of seven new gifts that were not guaranteed to us the day before. While this may seem like stating the obvious, we really need to discipline ourselves to take this view. Whether we are vacationing, resting, or working, the new day is a precious gift. David says in Psalm 119:16 that “all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be”. This means none of them are by accident! Our church culture has become just like the secular culture, as we often go throughout our weeks just desperately anticipating that encouraging music, inspiring sermon, or uplifting fellowship we get every Sunday at church, only to spend the rest of the week “just getting through” it. This must change if we are to impact the lost world. We must view our jobs as blessings and approach each day as an opportunity to worship God and be thankful for what he has given us. If we can master this, the vacations, days of rest, and Sunday celebrations with the family of God will be even sweeter.