Life is hard, so the popular saying goes. We toil hard, either under the sun or in an air-conditioned environment, and it wears us down. Go to the Central Business District in Singapore and we see working men and women walking at an increased pace.
Whether a person is a Bible believer or not, he/she can intuitively agree with the writerof the Book of Ecclesiastes.
“I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit (Ecc 1:14).”
Many Christians seem to be sucked into the same whirlpool of mindless toiling. We work for a paycheck, we work to pay the bills, but we have lost a sense of higher meaning. We work for the sake of working, bowed down by the cares of this life.
Like Martha. The Lord said to her in a gentle rebuke, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things” (Luke 10:41).
In our fast-paced, hectic society, Christians understand only too well the condition of the seeds that fell among thorns.
“And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature” (Luke 8:14).
The children of God ought to be able to look above and beyond the mere toils of this life. We should see beyond the horizon and see that “There’s a beautiful place called heaven, it is hidden above the bright blue, where the good, who from earth-ties are riven, live and love an eternity through.”
This earthly existence is not all there is. We have a hope that transcends all the riches of this world.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1Pe 1:3).
This is a hope that calls us to action. A living hope is lively and active, never passive.
“Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1Pe 1:13).
“…knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways…not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ…you who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God” (1Pe 1:18-21).
Our faith and hope are in God. Is this a reality in our lives?
Are we, like Martha, anxious and troubled about many things? So much of our anxiety and troubles are caused by carnal concerns in this temporal world. If this world is all there is, then we have nothing but the cares and concerns of this world.
The apostle says to us, “But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Php 3:20). As citizens of heaven, this world is not our home. We are pilgrims passing through to our home in “glory land that outshines the sun.”
Since this is the case, is it worth it to allow the cares of this world to overwhelm and choke us, robbing us of our sense of peace and meaning? Yes, we do have to make a living. “For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat” (2Th 3:10).
Take time to meditate on what really matters. Take time to ponder about the first things.
“Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’…But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Mat 6:31, 33)