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 (43)

43 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)

  6. Katelyn Kenney says:

    I want to lift up those who are unemployed or underemployed; may their unpaid labors be an offering that is pleasing to God

  7. Ashley Thomas says:

    I left my dream job as a kindergarten teacher to be a stay at home mom when my second child was born 5 years ago. I have really struggled with feeling like I am contributing to society, especially now that both my children are in school. I have started subbing, but I continue to pray each day for God to set me on His path. I am slowly starting to see that His path may be one where I am not ever a full time employee outside the home, but I still really struggle with accepting that as my purpose.

    1. truthseeker says:

      Oh my dear Ashley – do not fall into the worlds ideas of what you should be doing and accomplishing and contributing etc.etc.etc. Raising your children in the admonition of the Lord so that when they are older they will follow in His ways is the biggest contribution to society that has eternal results. In this day and age being a stay at home mom is a privilege and a necessity to being available to your children when they need you. I you want to work part time while they are in school is ok but being home when they come home from school is so important. Please do not feel that you are “less than” because you are raising your children. That is God’s original design for the family.
      Blessings on you and your concern for discerning God’s will for your life which extends to your childrens lives.

      1. Georgia Di says:

        Amen & amen! Even tho I don’t feel that’s my particular calling – that is SO true, being a stay at home mother is a gift to the children AND the entire society. For all we know, they will model their character (built at home, watching their mom all these years)- in positions of influence in the future. Maybe you’re raising a David in your house!❤️

    2. Stephanie D says:

      God will continue to reveal himself to you with this. Continue to listen to him, and to people you trust and you never know how he may fulfill those desires!

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