Sermons

Summary: Work is a blessing from God to be enjoyed. Seven wrong ways and seven right ways to work and enjoy it.

Making The Most Of My Life: Six Ways We Waste Our Day

Part 6 of 6: Idle Working

II Thessalonians 3:6-8

"Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is living in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us; we were not idle when we were with you, we did not eat any one’s bread without paying, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not burden any of you." 2 Thessalonians 3:6-8 (RSV)

Labor And It’s Two Extremes

- "Work either expands or contracts in order to fill the time available." - Parkinson’s Law

Confucius said, "Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life."

- "There are two kinds of people, those who do the work and those who take the credit. Try to be in the first group - there is less competition." - Indira Ghandi

- One for our retirees, "Cessation of work is not accompanied by cessation of expenses." - Cato The Elder

- "I am his mistress. His work is his wife." - Marion Javits

- "I like work; it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours." - Jerome K. Jerome

- "Every job has drudgery, whether it is in the home, in the school, or in the office. The first secret of happiness is the recognition of this fundamental fact." - M. C. Mcintosh

- "When you cease to make a contribution, you begin to die." - Eleanor Roosevelt

- "A woman’s work is never done, especially the part she asks her husband to do." - Source Unknown

[SermonCentral.com. Work, Colossians 3:23-24. by Gary Bennett.]

Two Extremes: Sluggards

Workaholics

Sluggard

Motto: "Thank God it’s Friday"

-cut corners

-shirk duties

-put their work upon others

-procrastinate on everything

-anytime work is involved, it’s going to be a bad day.

-sentiments of Alexander, the main character in Judith Viorst’s book, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. His story opens with these words: "I went to sleep with gum in my mouth and now there’s gum in my hair, and when I got out of bed this morning I tripped on the skateboard and by mistake I dropped my sweater in the sink while the water was running, and I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. I think I’ll move to Australia. In the car pool Mrs. Gibson let Becky have a seat by the window. Audrey and Elliott got seats by the window, too. I said I was being smushed. I said, "If I don’t get a seat by the window, I’m going to be carsick and throw up!" No one answered. I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. And that’s just the way it turned out. That night I told my Mom, "it has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. My mom says days are like that. Even in Australia. [SermonCentral.com. How to Survive Work, Luke 5:1-11. by David Zachrich.]

"The sluggard says, "There is a lion in the road! There is a lion in the streets!" As a door turns on its hinges, so does a sluggard on his bed. The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; it wears him out to bring it back to his mouth." (Proverb 26:13-15 (RSV)

Workaholic

Motto: "Thank God it’s Monday"

-long hours at work

-lacks sleep

-jobs are never done (tasks get finished, but the job is never done)

-Proverb 6:10-11 to the extreme

"A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a vagabond, and want like an armed man." (Proverb 6:10-11 (RSV)

-neglect Psalm 127:2

"It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep." Psalm 127:2 (RSV)

Minirth and Meier, two Christian psychiatrists, give us a picture of the workaholic’s true nature and its results:

"… the selfishness of the perfectionist (workaholic) is much more subtle. While he is out in society saving humanity at a work pace of eighty to a hundred hours a week, he is selfishly ignoring his wife and children. He is burying his emotions and working like a computerized robot. He helps mankind partially out of love and compassion, but mostly as an unconscious compensation for his insecurity, and as a means of fulfilling both his strong need for society’s approval and his driving urge to be perfect. He is self-critical and deep within himself feels inferior. He feels like a nobody, and spends the bulk of his life working at a frantic pace to prove to himself that he is really not (as he suspects deep within) a nobody. In his own eyes, and in the eyes of society, he is the epitome of human dedication. … He becomes angry when his wife and children place demands on him. He can’t understand how they could have the nerve to call such an unselfish, dedicated servant a selfish husband and father. … In reality, his wife and children are correct, and they are suffering severely because of his subtle selfishness." [SermonCentral.com. A Word for Workaholics, Psalm 127. -Frank B. Minirth and Paul D. Meier, Happiness Is a Choice (Baker Book House: Grand Rapids, 1978), p. 56.]

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