The first Labor Day took place on September 5th, 1882, to celebrate better treatment, fair wages, and improved working conditions. It’s a time that we celebrate workers past and present. The Bible has much to say about work as well. A large part of it can be summed up by Colossians 3:23, which says, “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.”

God wants us to keep perspective on the work we do. No matter what you find yourself doing for work, you can be influencing the world for Jesus simply by how you carry it out. If you radiate Christ through what you do, you are working for the Lord instead of for people.

There are many instances in scripture of people who lived this out. First, there was Joseph. Though he was sold into slavery and put into many more seemingly possible situations after that, he worked diligently in every role he found himself in and in doing so, pleased the Lord. Ruth worked night and day in the field to provide for both her and her widowed mother-in-law. Nehemiah worked tirelessly with his fellow Israelites to restore the walls of Jerusalem. Paul’s life was devoted to ministry, but He worked with his hands as a tentmaker to support his work and to aid the churches he planted.

These are just a few examples of individuals in the Bible who exhibited qualities of hard work, dedication, and perseverance in their respective contexts. Their stories serve as inspiration and reminders of the value of industriousness, faithfulness, and commitment in various aspects of life.

Finally, we must remember that even though hard work is to be celebrated, we weren’t made to simply work. Exodus 20:9-10 says, “You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the LORD your God.”

We must honor the Sabbath, resting as the Lord did on the seventh day. It is not simply a suggestion, but a command from the Lord. Let this Labor Day serve as a reminder to work hard for God but also to honor the Sabbath and rest as He created us to do.

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