Working with a Heavenly Perspective: How Labor can Make us Holy

Often, work is associated with dread. It’s Monday again (with a sigh)! We of course, should increase in gratefulness for work helps us in our Daily Bread (like in the prayer, Our Father). It is a gift and ought to be valued (and not cursed). Perhaps, as Christians we can view it with a Heavenly perspective. St. Therese of Lisieux once said:

Let us go forward in peace, our eyes upon heaven, the only one goal of our labors.

Work is a blessing and a means to Heaven. Here are 3 ways how labor makes us holy:

1. Work Enables.

Our work vocation enables us to support our primary vocation.

Work is a vocation within a vocation. If your vocation is marriage, then to what work are you called to in order to help in the goal of marriage? This is where we look at our God-given gifts and match it with the opportunities in our midst. Perhaps we can introspect: Is my work helping my marriage or is it putting a wedge between me and my spouse?

2. Work Sanctifies.

The crosses we bear at work is an opportunity for sanctity.

The reason why we often dread work are the labors (or people) we want to avoid. Yet, we are enjoined by the Gospel to deny ourselves, pick up our crosses and follow Christ (cf Mt. 16:24). The things that bring pain and discomfort (and suffering) are also opportunities for sanctity: Bearing with other people’s attitudes; bearing with endless mounds of paper work; bearing with processes (and you’re in a rush!); bearing with the nitty gritty requirements of filling forms… the list goes on. What may be lacking is that we fail to transcend our suffering into offering. Offer your sacrifice of work to the Lord.

3. Work Evangelizes.

The workplace is a venue for witnessing.

Where else can we bring the Gospel than where we spend most of our days and hours — the workplace! The challenge is how to apply the inspiration of our morning’s Bible reading into our actions and decisions as a worker or entrepreneur. Work is a place to witness — a venue to practice Christianity.

Sharing what Pope Francis is saying:

Business is a vocation, and a noble vocation, provided that those engaged in it see themselves challenged by a greater meaning in life… (Evangelii gaudium 203)

May your work bring meaning to your life and lead you to our Heavenly Home.

Reflect:

  1. What are your greatest hurdles to holiness in your work?
  2. What steps will you make to sanctify your work?

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