Vacation

What a great week! I’m on vacation! Now some of you may not consider it much of a vacation because I’m staying home to (Are you ready for this?) work. That’s right. I’m staying home to work. I’m getting a lot of things done around the house that I just can’t seem to find time for the rest of the year. I’m sure some of you are making a distasteful facial expression right about now, but I have to tell you, completing a task is an absolute thrill for me. There’s just something about accomplishments that give me the ultimate buzz. I seldom enjoy the process, but I like stepping back, looking at what’s been completed, and then checking off the box that says, “I got one more thing finished.”

Of course, I’m taking some breaks too. It’s nice to sit back, grab a good book, and just enjoy. I can never get enough time with Debbie (my wife), so it’s wonderful to be able to spend so much time with her. Asher (my grandson) just got back from the beach, so we had a marvelous reunion last night. I can’t help but wonder, however, how much time “off” is enough? Some of us—given the chance—would take an eternal break from work. Of course, we know that’s not a good thing (2 Thess. 3:10). Genesis 2:15 tells us, “Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.” This is before sin and the curse, so we can ascertain that God intended man to work from the beginning. In other words, mankind was designed for work.

So why do so many of us have a difficult time with it? Space doesn’t permit me to go into all of the reasons why, but I’d like to encourage you with a passage from 2 Corinthians 4. Paul is talking to the Corinthians about the crushing persecution he’s endured. In verse 16 he says, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.” That’s a very interesting statement to me. Paul talks about how he’s physically wearing out, but spiritually he’s being renewed every day, therefore he won’t “lose heart.” What’s more, in verse 17 he calls his persecution a “light affliction” and it’s “but for a moment.” In other words, what we’re physically enduring here on earth is for a short time; it’s not going to last forever. The last part of verse 17 is my favorite. Paul says that this “light affliction” we’re enduring “is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” That means that in the end, after you pass away, you’re going to be able to step back, look at all that’s been accomplished and hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Of course, that’s only if you did the work.

In a season when we are taking our vacations to renew ourselves, let’s be reminded that God’s work never ends. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not speaking out against vacations. Take them. Enjoy them. Rest and renew yourselves. But let’s come back with a desire to do the work of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Let’s remember that our efforts are “working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.”