Day 10

Give Thanks in Work

from the Give Thanks reading plan

Ecclesiastes 5:18-20, Genesis 2:4-9, Genesis 2:15, Nehemiah 2:11-18, Psalm 90:17, Acts 20:35, Colossians 3:17

BY Rebecca Faires

Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 5:18-20, Genesis 2:4-9, Genesis 2:15, Nehemiah 2:11-18, Psalm 90:17, Acts 20:35, Colossians 3:17

Even before the fall, we were created to work (Genesis 2:15). And while it feels good to sleep in on occasion, I believe we all can agree on the immense satisfaction that comes from work. Many of our proudest moments come from a job well done. (I’m looking at you, summer garden strawberries.)

Though we were created for work, the work we have to do is not always work we love. Because of the curse, we will sometimes work really hard and see nothing for our efforts. (I mean, I planted fifty watermelon seeds and not one watermelon. I’m sure it could happen to anyone. No big deal.) For our work to be profitable, the Lord must redeem it and bless it. When everything comes together, we get to do work that we love, work that yields a good result and is blessed by the Lord. I think that’s everyone’s dream.

How do we achieve this dream of perfect work? What can we do to get the Lord to “establish the work of our hands”? (Psalm 90:17). Here’s the tricky bit. We can’t. The favor of the Lord looks different at different times, and wealth and success are not necessarily measures of His favor. Our task is to keep working with a good heart, even when the circumstances are far from perfect.

The greatest work of all is the work of our salvation. That work has already been done by Christ-all our work is secondary to His. So we work from a place of thankfulness and obedience, knowing that the greatest work is already complete.

Nehemiah worked from a place of trust and thanksgiving (Nehemiah 2:17-18). He didn’t know that one of the gates he rebuilt would mark the spot where Jesus would one day enter Jerusalem, riding on a donkey as the people shouted “Hosanna!” (Matthew 21:1-11). We don’t always know precisely what work we are called to do or for what purpose; I find that I rarely know. But we do know we are called to do good work, and that we are called to continue our work faithfully. We work and hope because the greatest work has already been done for us.

Whether you feel you are engaged in the greatest calling of your life, every day singing with purpose, or if you are planting seeds in a garden with little hope that they will sprout, you can echo with Paul: “Whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).


Rebecca Faires loves the gospel story and needs it every morning when she wakes up to her five little people. Rebecca holds a bachelor’s degree in German from Hillsdale College, and most recently worked as the managing editor and writer at She Reads Truth. She now works from her log cabin in the hills of Tennessee, writing and illustrating books with her favorite mountain man. There she enjoys porch-sitting as it rains, reading the Oxford English Dictionary, and getting in way over her head. She is expecting her sixth baby and her first book in February of 2019.

Post Comments (41)

41 thoughts on "Give Thanks in Work"

  1. Lauren M says:

    As a teacher and a new-ish mom (almost 2yr old), this is hard. We don’t often see our strawberries, but see more “bad” things: students’ home lives, not good test scores, no thank you from my toddler, etc… but we hold on to the promises of God that if we keep working without giving up, we will reap a great harvest one day. Knowing that whatever I do will bring glory to God is also extremely helpful.

    1. Kelly Gvoth says:

      Amen! I hold onto those far-and-few-between emails or notes from a student or parent telling me they loved the class or finally understand math because of me! Those little reminders are Good showing His blessing in the works He’s called me to! Thanks for sharing and keep working for His glory!

  2. E Hong says:

    Having a mindset of doing everything in Jesus name is hard, especially for me when there is stuff going on. However as time goes by I can see God’s big picture

  3. E Hong says:

    this is a good reminder to keep giving thanks to God even when your current situation is not very easy to give thanks -ellie

  4. Steph C says:

    “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Col. 3:17). So timely. I’m starting a new job on Tuesday. A bit nervous. Also excited. I want to honor God in what I do and say. I want to be thankful and a blessing to my co-workers, my patients, their families. I know there will be a lot to learn. It’s so easy to complain. I want to choose every day to be thankful.

  5. Sarah Rose says:

    I think there is something rare about being faithful in work in society today. I observe a mindset of punching in and punching out…and one day you get to retire. And as a young woman that gets me down sometimes and I realize I don’t want that for my life. And already I have experienced jobs that I just bear…I mindlessly do it because I don’t enjoy it. But what a great reminder that work is holy. Your work is holy as a doctor. Your work is holy as a cashier…as a teacher, etc. So I will keep this in mind and be asking myself- how can I be faithful to God in my work? (Even on the hard days)

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