If you knew me and my husband, then you would know that the eight bookshelves we have in our house aren’t just filled with decorative books that we have never read. We love to read, though admittedly, we are beginning to collect a stack of books that take longer to get around to since we had kids.
But this isn’t always the case. Recently, I was searching our shelves for a book entitled, “Created for Work: Practical Insights for Young Men,” by Bob Schultz. Now, you would think that maybe I ordered this for my sons, but really, I ordered it for myself, and was so glad that I did. This is written in a short, devotional-style format and focused on a largely neglected theme in both church circles as well as modern America – the power of a job well done. Even my husband, who is a Bible teacher and has countless books on the nature of God, found himself devouring this book and wanting to make changes in his own life.
I won’t go into a count-by-count synopsis, but in just re-reading the first chapter, which discussed how God never left anything half-done, and pointed out how He didn’t have to create such amazing detail in His creation, I was challenged to try and find one thing in my daily chores that I could do better, or to which I could add an “unnecessary” dose of beauty and joy. It’s not always easy though. Work in our society has increasingly become a thing to be avoided. We spend gobs of money on devices that are meant to make our lives easier. And while I don’t advocate a life of perfectionism or spending too much time on needless work, I do think that I miss out on ways to interact with God and bless others when I don’t try to put my best into something.
As a stay-at-home mom of two little boys, I don’t always have time to go on silent retreats or have long, extended quiet times, but I do have time to do the dishes, fold the laundry, and do other chores. The mere mention of these tasks may scream drudgery to many, but do they have to be?