Summary: Labor Day is a holiday that should have never been needed. The Labor movement and what it has turned into is what happens when people do not live according to the two great commandments!
Tomorrow is Labor Day and this is Labor Day weekend!
There are a couple of important things we all need to know about Labor Day and what it means to us …
1) It is not fashionable to wear white after Labor Day
(hopefully this only applies to outer wear …)
2) It is not appropriate to wear garments made from seersucker fabric after Labor Day
3) Labor Day is the unofficial end of Summer!!!
Labor Day was established in the late 1800’s
Unions had been established due to unfair labor practices.
Horrendous working hours
Not all employers or companies were unfair but many would squeeze every ounce of work from their employees while paying them only enough to keep a roof over their heads and to keep their family from starving.
Now, in many cases the tables have turned. In many closed, union shops the threat of strike is held over the head of the companies to squeeze every nickel and penny they can get.
In my 20’s I worked at a union forging works and got reprimanded by fellow workers for working too fast.
Many times I saw a forging crew finish their eight hour piece rate in four hours and then just sit in the break room for the last four hours of the day. That company went out of business.
Our son works as a nurse in an ICU wing of Highland hospital in Rochester. He cannot empty an overflowing waste can without getting in trouble with the sanitation labor union.
Well, both of these are unfair! But you say, “Life isn’t fair.”
That’s not exactly a true statement. Life as God intended it to be IS fair.
Fair is the way God intended and intends us to live our lives and that includes work, working diligently and with the welfare of others in mind.
We all know our memory verse from Matthew 22:37-40
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment and the second it like it. Love your neighbor as yourself. All the law and the prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Now, remember, we are created in the image of God. God is a worker and so we are intended to be workers as well! And, God sets a great example.
Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty! All Thy works shall praise Thy name in earth and sky and sea!
Psalm 19:1 says,
“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.”
“All Thy works shall praise Thy name!”
I always thought of this as it says in Shout to The LORD, “mountains bow down and seas will roar at the sound of Your name.” but it’s more than that.
Let me give you a simple example: say for instance someone said to me, “Make me a shovel so that I can dig a hole.” And I brought this to that person. Would they declare the glory of my handiwork or would they curse my ineptitude and slothfulness?
But, what if I went to my garage and from a lump of metal I dug out of the ground I made steel and hammered it into this shovel head and then went to the woods, cut down a young tree and on a lathe turned down this handle and brought it to them. They would declare the glory of my handiwork!
Such is the case with the handiwork of the Lord declaring His glory. Just a couple of weeks ago Pastor Karenlee and I were driving somewhere and came across a beautiful vista of a corn field that must have been at least a hundred acres surrounded by dozens of gorgeous, lush, tree covered hills and topped with a perfectly clear blue sky! It was breath taking! The bountiful works of God bringing praise for His name from our lips! Awesome!
Now, remember, we are created in the image of God and as born again Christians we are supposed to be conformed to the image of Christ, so, whatever we do reflects not only on us but on God Himself.
Now, here’s an important distinction! Work is not just what we think of as work. Getting up early in the morning and heading off to a job.
Work involves every area of our lives.
How many of us “work” at our family relationships?
How many of us husbands “work” at loving our wives? What do I mean to “work” at loving our wives?
Ephesians 5:25 and 28 say,
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her …”
“In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.”