It seems only fitting that on Labor Day, we discuss the benefits of labor. While I could talk about labor in terms of labor and delivery since I do have experience in this area – times seven – today I am talking about the work sort of labor.
So, why do we want to labor or work hard? Why should we as moms work and labor hard?
I’ve got five reasons why we should.
God commands us to.
All throughout the Bible He talks about lazy people and about people who work hard, and he is forever pointing out the benefits of working hard. The entire concept of “he who does not work, does not eat” is God’s idea first, even though we often read about this concept in American history since this same idea was also spoken to the Pilgrims by John Smith as they were trying to establish a life in the New World.
Furthermore, God gives us gifts and talents so that we can use them to work hard. He entrusts us with our particular set of skills and talents so that we can use them to glorify Him. To whittle these things away by not using them, by not laboring hard is to take these good gifts for granted.
Second, we are to labor and work hard because we are called to serve and bless others.
Serving and blessing others can be done in a variety of ways, but it is we who must take the initiative. If we wait for opportunities to serve others to come our way, they rarely will. In order to be obedient to God we must be willing to serve others. If you are in a busy season of life and serving is hard, believe me, I can relate. Life is crazy busy for me right now, but even in this season we can serve. We can drop a card in the mail, we can call someone who is feeling down, or we can even purge our closets or buy items to donate. We can always find ways to serve others whether we are serving our family or friends, serving within our church, or serving in our community in some way.
Third, and this applies specifically to us as moms, we are to work and labor hard because our kids are learning how to develop their own work ethic by watching us.
As much as we would like to have our kids buy into the “do I say and not as I do” mentality, they just don’t. They shouldn’t, really. If our kids see us working hard, striving to succeed whether we actually do or not, they are learning so much about life. Don’t we all want kids who are able to work hard, support themselves, and utilize their own gifts and talents to bless others? I think we would all say that we do. They have a much greater likelihood of doing this if we are working hard.
Next, working hard is to our benefit because we gain such an incredible sense of accomplishment through working hard.
Even if the outcome is not as we would have hoped, just accomplishing something, especially if it is something we never thought we could do, creates such a fantastic sense of accomplishment. We can’t talk about this without talking about trying to cheat our way to accomplishing things. If we, or anyone else, rises to the top because cheating was involved, that sense of accomplishment will be missing. Most times, accomplishing good things without the hard work behind it makes us feel pretty cruddy if we are being honest. This was something I talked about with my oldest daughter a couple of times this year when she was surpassed by someone who didn’t earn it. I reminded her that she wouldn’t want to be in that place without having earned it. For this reason, I am guessing that this cheater, or any cheater, doesn’t even want that thing they cheated to get in the end. You can read more about when I dealt with the issue of cheating in When Your Child Has to Compete With a Cheater. If you have accomplished something in your work, completed an athletic event, or furthered your education, chances are you are already familiar with this sense of accomplishment.
Finally, we want to work and labor hard because it is only through this kind of work that we can accomplish great things.
Rare is the person who can be successful simply because they exist or because luck seems to fall into their lap. Generally, success is achieved through hard work. I’m sure you will agree that there is nothing better than looking back on past history and seeing all that we achieved through our own blood, sweat, and tears. Achieving greatness is something that most people strive for.
I hope this Labor Day finds you doing well and with an extended time off from work for enjoying your family and friends as well as the last whispers of summer. Take some time to reflect on why we should labor, and labor hard. It is because we are being obedient to God in using the gifts and talents that He gives us to work hard and to serve others, because our kids are looking to us for what it means to work hard, and to accomplish greatness while gaining a sense of accomplishment that we should make every day a labor of love while giving it everything we’ve got.
Have a good week! While most kids are going back to school mine already started last Monday! Enjoy a week of firsts!
The striving mother:)