Do Not Grow Weary of Doing Good

Do Not Grow Weary of Doing Good

by Julie Johnson

The letters of Paul to the Thessalonians deal a lot with the Day of the Lord and also with idleness. The connection between the two likely lays in the fact that the Thessalonian people believed firmly that Jesus’ second coming had already happened and, if not, that it was imminent in their near future. Because of this, some of them found work to be unnecessary - why go dig a hole, mend a shirt, or build a wall when the world is coming to an end?

We know now for certain that the Lord didn’t return in the lifetimes of those Thessalonians, and Scripture is clear about the fact that we will not and cannot know the day of Christ’s second coming. In the meantime, the Lord has called us to work and not grow weary (2 Thes 3:13). Paul has a similar exhortation to the Galatians (Gal. 6:9) and to the Corinthians (1 Cor 15:58). He adds on in those passages that in due season we will reap, and that we can know that in the Lord our labor is not in vain. 

We are serving Him as we serve those around us. What should characterize us in our work then is not weariness but dedication! 

I have trouble with this. I often grow weary. You’re reading this so you know me - tending to the needs of one-month-old twins and homeschooling three children fills my hours, my moments, my lungs. I try to keep the house tidy; although, let’s be real, my husband cleans up after me and the kids on most days. I try to keep the kids bathed and their nails clipped; although, again if I’m being real, I really only remember when their razor sharp talons accidentally wound me. I do these things day and night. I say this to illustrate to you that I know there is a drudgery that surrounds the work that the Lord calls us to do day after day. I know it wears on us all. So how do we continue steadfastly? All we have and all we need is the example of Christ that’s referenced in the fifth verse of this same chapter. “May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and the steadfastness of Christ.” He will not leave us, and in response we must not leave our post: whether that entails washing dishes, adjusting insurance claims, teaching children, spreading mulch, or programming software does not matter. We are to press on, work hard, and represent Christ in the meantime.

In “A Liturgy For First Waking” from the book Every Moment Holy, Doug Mckelvey calls us to, “shepherd the small duties of each day with great love.” 

How perfectly and simply true. Do not grow weary in doing good. Sometimes that basic reminder is the message you need to hear. It’s the one that I need today. 

As you work and as you become weary, 
May the God of Peace grant you peace.
At all times. In every way. 
The Lord be with you all.

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