Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Work and the Burdens of Daily LIfe

Our daily lives are of necessity filled with daily chores and work.  This is our duty, to do them and to do them well.  All our activities, including our work, even household chores, must be performed so that we are not distracted from thoughts about God.  We cannot assume that because it is work, we do not have to think about God.  God needs to be a part of every aspect of our lives.  But, the reality is for most of us, when we are off to work, we are also away from thinking about God.  This is wrong and dangerous.

Saint Theophan reminds us,
Life's everyday affairs, upon which the foundation of the home and society depend, are appointed by God, and carrying out them is not a desertion to the sphere of the ungodly, but a continuation of Godly affairs.
We need to carry our both our household duties and our work in a way that we carry our the commandments given to us by God.  Do everything as if you are doing God's work.  This is the truest reality.  All you do must be done for God.

Saint Theophan says,
Begin doing things with the knowledge that doing them in this way is a commandment, and do them as God's commandment is to be done.  Once you have set yourself to this, there is nothing that will turn your thoughts away from God; on the contrary, everything will bring them closer to Him.  All of us are servants of God.  He has appointed each person a place and occupation, and He looks to see how each one of us carries it out.  He is everywhere.  He looks after you, too.  Keep this in your thoughts and do each thing as if it were entrusted to you directly by God, no matter what it is.
It is our obligation to God to carry out all our activities with attentiveness and enthusiasm.  Saint Theophan says that if we perform Godly work in a carless manner it is cursed.  Nor, do we want to carry worry into our work.  Worry only disturbs our minds and keeps us from focusing properly on the task at hand.

Saint Theophan says,
Have enthusiasm for your work and, performing it with utmost care, expect success from God, dedicating the task to Him, no matter how small it is, and you will get rid of worry.

Reference: The Spiritual LIfe, pp 212-215 

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