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Summary: What does it mean to find or achieve great success in your work? How do we find satisfaction and joy in our work? For our purposes this morning, we will speak mostly in terms of employee-employer, but the same principles apply equally to the school envi


2nd in Series: Searching For Success

Rev. Todd G. Leupold, Perth Bible Church, January 17, 2010 AM


Work. School. Just saying/hearing the words evokes all kinds of different thoughts and emotions. Today, they are represented in TV shows such as “The Office” and “Glee Club.” Before that, it was “Dilbert.” In the 80s we had movies like “9 to 5” and “The Breakfast Club.” In the 70s, Johnny Paycheck recorded his hit single crooning “Take this job and shove it, I ain’t working here no more.” Tennessee Ernie Ford sang, “You load 16 tons, and what do you get, another day older and deeper in debt.”

In 39 years, I’ve worked as a paper boy, stock boy, just about every position possible in a restaurant (beginning with dishwasher), research assistant, janitor, landscaper, public relations, data entry, retail administrator, sales manager, bus driver, security guard and Pastor. Not to mention countless years as a ’professional student.’ I have been supervised and I have supervised others. All very different responsibilities and environments. Yet, the more I look back the more I can see common elements required for success and satisfaction in each of these very different jobs and environments – some I regularly achieved, some I didn’t. And, if you haven’t noticed, I’m still learning and working at it.

So, let me ask you: Do you really like your school or job? Does it ’fulfill’ you? Is it a passion in your life? Have you and do you continue to find great success in your work? Or, do you agree with comedian Jerome K. Jerome , who once quipped: “I like work. It fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours”?

What does it mean to find or achieve great success in your work? How do we find satisfaction and joy in our work? For our purposes this morning, we will speak mostly in terms of employee-employer, but the same principles apply equally to the school environment – whatever the educational level.



In the context of it’s original audience, our text speaks of slaves and masters because in that time and place most everybody was a form of slave – indebted worker. Those who weren’t, were masters. There was no ’middle class’ or ’middle way.’

For our application, it is best we make the distinction between them as those who work under the authority of another (slaves) and those who work in authority above others (masters).

With this understanding, let us look at God’s universal principles that bring us the keys to success in our school and work.


A.) Obedience

Slaves, obey your human masters in everything

Two exasperated company executives were discussing a scatterbrained office boy who had a habit of fouling up important errands. “How long has he been with us, anyway?” asked one of the executives. “He’s never been with us,” replied the other. “He’s been against us from the start” (Nelson’s Big Book of Laughter, pg. 446, original source unknown)

Whether what is required of us is pleasant or unpleasant, noticed or unnoticed, appreciated or unappreciated, fair or unfair, we are to be obedient to those in authority over us – whether we chose them or not.

Not simply out of duty, but with the fullness of our hearts.

1Timothy 6:1-2 All who are under the yoke as slaves must regard their own masters to be worthy of all respect, so that God’s name and His teaching will not be blasphemed. And those who have believing masters should not be disrespectful to them because they are brothers, but should serve them better, since those who benefit from their service are believers and dearly loved. Teach and encourage these things.

1Peter 2:17-18 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the Emperor. Household slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the cruel.

B.) Diligence

"don’t work only while being watched, in order to please men, but work wholeheartedly, fearing the Lord. Whatever you do, do it enthusiastically"

As we are all aware, many of us painfully so, the unemployment rate is the highest it’s been in decades. Wherever one goes, it seems there are people not working. Sadly, and to the frustration of the unemployed, many of these people still have a title and a paycheck!

Someone once asked Pope John XXIII how many people worked at the Vatican. “Half of them,” he replied.

Diligence in our work needs to be applied at the proper time. In the words of the great American poet, Robert Frost: “The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts working the moment you get up in the morning and does not stop until you get to the office.” That is NOT the formula for success.

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