How Does Being Created in the Image of God Change How We Think about Our Work?
Reflecting God in Our Work
Because we're created in the image of God, reflecting him in what we do, we're also fulfilling his purposes for our lives. And that means we take a special perspective into the jobs that we do.
There's the old account of Martin Luther who came across some brick layers. He said to one, What are you doing? And the first said, Well, I'm laying bricks. He said to the next one, What are you doing? And the other said, I'm building a cathedral.
There was a sense in which, by being made in the image of God, the latter recognized, I'm participating in God's purposes. Yes, there's a job that I do there: the mechanics and practices of any profession. But there's another sense in which we recognize God has put us in that place for the purposes of imaging God—of reflecting him, of reflecting his purposes.
Grace at Work
Author and pastor Bryan Chapell shares what the Bible teaches about work and how the gospel makes our jobs instruments of his grace.
When God called Adam and Eve to do a job, to tend and maintain the garden so that it would produce fruit, there was a flourishing of creation that was to be stewarded and a maintaining of creation that was to be cultivated. When we are made in God's image, we recognize that what we are doing is we are still fulfilling God's purposes, reflecting them in the world, pushing back the darkness, pushing back the fall. And in doing so, we are pushing the kingdom forward.
I'm cultivating and making flourish the purposes of God for his people. How can I know that's my purpose? Because I'm made in the image of God. That's what God is doing. And so as I am honoring God in what I do, in acting with integrity and diligence in my work, I'm actually fulfilling his kingdom purpose in the ordinary job that I do.
Bryan Chapell is the author of Grace at Work: Redeeming the Grind and the Glory of Your Job.
12 Passages to Read to Help Fight Laziness
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.
Our occupation is what occupies us as we make a living. The word vocation originates in a word for “calling” and refers to what God has called us to do to fulfill his mission in our lives.
The Value of Your Work Isn't Attached to a Dollar Sign
I don’t want to diminish the need to pay people a fair wage for the work they do. But it is important for us to see work as a contribution, and not always with a dollar sign attached to it.
Podcast: Why Your Job Has Meaning and Purpose . . . Even If You Don't Like It (Bryan Chapell)
Bryan Chapell talks about why the work you do day in and day out matters to God—probably more than you realize.