1 Thessalonians 1:3 (NIV)“We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines work as “sustained physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an objective or result”.
ENDURANCE INSPIRED BY HOPE: Endurance is your ability to persist in the midst of difficulty and opposition. The Scripture above reveals that our attitude to work should be one of endurance inspired by hope. Where does this hope come from? It is the hope that is inspired by the Word of God and the Spirit of God. In this world, Jesus reveals that there will be tribulation, and while we try to accomplish tasks, there will be opposition. Despite this, we are not dismayed because we know as Christians we have the victory in Christ Jesus. Our victory becomes a reality as we adhere to the Word of God.
As we work, keeping our eyes on the word of God should inspire a hope that goes beyond the circumstances that are being faced. Take for example Jacob who had his wages changed three times by his father in law (Gen.31:7). Jacob was able to continue working with hope of what he desired. Now in the word of God, Jesus administers a more superior covenant that is established on better promises. Now the hope we base our endurance on is more fulfilling and more rewarding.
WORK PRODUCED BY FAITH: Paul goes highlights that there exist work produced by faith. Faith we know is a spiritual force, so the accomplishment of tasks is not limited to physical and mental efforts, but also to spiritual exertion of faith.
It takes complete confidence in God and His word in order to accomplish a task that is worthy of anything. Faith is grounded in the word of God; therefore our work in life has to be based on the application of biblical principles. This changes the perspective on who the boss is, and what the determining factor of competence is. With this in mind, Colossians 3:23 urges that as Christians, we ought to work as people in service to God, and not unto man. It takes faith to do this effectively when your flesh is screaming otherwise when we encounter difficult situation. However where there’s a need for faith, there is an availability of grace!
Do things look dark and hopeless around? Do you feel used? Well, keep your eyes on the word of God. Receive inspiration to continue diligently, Abraham believe contrary to hope of failing situations, and He did not waver at the promise of God but was strengthened himself, being inspired as he gave thanks to God. He was fully convinced that God will manifest the promise!
What’s your attitude to work? Is it one produced by faith? Trust God today in the area of your work by resting in His Word.
Here are a few Scriptures to meditate on that will help cultivate the right work attitude:
12 The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.
10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.
17 As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.” He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.
18 Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” 19 Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. 20 Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, 21 being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. 22 This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
74 May those who fear you rejoice when they see me, for I have put my hope in your word.