Next time you feel your work doesn’t matter or you are stuck doing what seems to be a meaningless task, remember this: you were designed to work.
Genesis 1:26–27 (ESV) — 26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
There are many ways to consider being made in God’s image, but one way is to consider God as the worker, then consider how we imitate Him as we work in similar ways.
First, consider God the planner. Planning is a basic part of work, something we may want to overlook but consider how God planned everything, even the end from the beginning.
Isaiah 46:9–10 (ESV) — 9 remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, 10 declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’
This is really quite remarkable but it’s a basic principle for planning to have a view of the end. It may seem tedious but it’s following in the image of God which should be encouraging next time you are involved in planning an event or project.
Secondly, consider God the craftsman. Just go through the account of creation in Genesis or other places in the Bible and see how God crafted the world out of nothing and man out of the dust of the ground. When you consider the intricacies of creation, you see the handiwork of a creator. No wonder people find such fulfillment in crafting things – be it a recipe, home project, or computer program. Whenever we exercise our creative juices in crafting something, we are reflecting the image of our Creator.
Thirdly, consider God the organizer. This one is really thrilling – hold on for this.
Genesis 1:1–2 (ESV) — 1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
Our brains cannot conceive of the scene above; we just know that in God’s process of creation there seemed to be chaos from which God established order. But this isn’t the only time God brought order out of chaos. Sin caused creation wide chaos to which God brought order through the redemptive work the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross, to be completed in full on the final day when God makes all things new.
Romans 8:22–25 (ESV) — 22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. 23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
So how does that connect to us? Whenever we are involved in organizing things, be it straightening up a closet, cleaning out the garage, picking up trash, or just making things look neat and orderly, we are honoring our Creator by reflecting God, the organizer, who brings order out of chaos.
No wonder one of the greatest known ways of fighting off depression is to work at bringing organization to at least one area of your life. When you seek to bring order out of a confused situation you are in tune to God.
These are just three examples of how our work in planning, constructing, or organizing reflect God’s work, thereby are not lowly but matter to Him and are meant to be fulfilling as we reflect Him.
Of course, as you consider the greatness of God the worker, the list includes God as provider who takes care of people and things, shepherd who leads and cares for people, and helper who comforts and encourages. All of these give us an even greater reason to see an opportunity for fulfillment in our work (whether on the job, at home, for the church) as we reflect our magnificent Creator.
Do you think your work doesn’t matter to God? Think again – whatever you do is a reflection of Him because you are created in His image. God’s plan is for you to sense fulfillment as you imitate Him.