Celebrate work: Jesus did just that | Letters To The Editor | starbeacon.com – The Star Beacon


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“Everything you always knew about work is wrong,” says John L. Micek in a column about millions of mainly low-wage workers who have dropped out of the work force for the pleasures of family and self-fulfillment. Sounds like an adolescent dream! Anything is better than the daily grind.

Studies “prove” this has nothing to do with generous unemployment benefits. But random interviews of the unemployed elicit the same answer: “Why work?” Millions of jobs go begging, even those with higher wages, bonuses, and benefits. People are deciding they don’t have to work.

I wonder why? Who pays the bills? The mortgage, car, taxes, utilities, food, insurance, technology, entertainment — Mommy and Daddy? Or Uncle Sam? Yes, it’s taxpayer dollars, provided by the dumb shmucks who are still working. The “rich” 10% pay 40% of income tax, but mainly it’s the ordinary worker who keeps the country going. “Can’t the government just print more money?” At our peril. Dollars need to be backed up by productivity, or money totally loses its value.

Finding the “right job” is usually a matter of trial and error, starting at the bottom with “grunt work,” building character and skills, developing talents you never knew you had. Many people find they actually like to work! When they find a job, a vocation they enjoy it doesn’t even seem like working: meeting the needs of others, building a business, creating something — or rather, the “work” aspect is eclipsed by the satisfaction of a job well done. 

Every once in a while some genius comes along and invents a new device or technique to make work easier — for those who can afford it. But there will always be dirty work: floors to mop, pans to scrub, toilets to clean. Who will do it?

There is a surprising benefit to work, for those who so choose. When God came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ, he showed us what God is like. “I come as a servant,” Jesus said, as he performed the most menial tasks. He wants his followers to follow his example. Many have found that any work, however menial, when done in love and to the glory of God, becomes a blessing to oneself and others. Some may scoff at this but many others have found it true.

So, I celebrate work!  

Mary Ellen Blake


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