There’s a good kind of tired. You know what I mean? That kind of tired where you’ve put in a full day of hard, physical work. You got dirty. You sweat. And now your muscles hurt. When you finally crawl into bed, you’re pretty sure you’ll be asleep before your head hits the pillow. I like that kind of tired because it means I used this body God gave me to do something productive.
I’ve been hauling and baling hay since I was in high school. It’s not what I’d call “fun,” and it’s certainly not easy. And yet, there’s something very satisfying about looking out over a mowed field and seeing those bales, knowing that I did the work – either by myself or as part of a team.
We often talk as though the “good life” would be one where we never had to work, where we lay on a beach somewhere and had someone wait on us hand and foot. Hey, nothing wrong with a vacation once in a while, but frankly, the Bible does not describe the good life as a life of leisure.
Consider the following:
- God Himself works. He creates. He sustains. He builds. He teaches and counsels. He heals. Genesis 2:2 says, “By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.” As His image-bearers, we were also meant to work.
- God gave humans work to do before the fall. It was part of His original design (Gen. 1:26-28).
- The commandment to rest on the Sabbath implies that the other six days are devoted to work.
- The Proverbs repeatedly commend hard work: “Consider the ant, you sluggard; consider her ways and be wise!” (Proverbs 6:6)
- Don’t get me wrong. I look forward to the weekend and a little R & R as much as the next guy, but rest and relaxation would not be meaningful or enjoyable without a steady diet of work.
Here at UGM, the reason we put a strong emphasis on work within our shelters and programs is because we know it’s a part of God’s design. He has equipped each of these men and women with skills and abilities, and when they discover a place where they can use those to contribute to society, they experience one of life’s great joys.
When you give to UGM, you’re feeding, clothing and sheltering people. You’re helping them to heal from deep wounds. And you’re helping them get back to work.