Picture: My children and I enjoying the beauty of ancient agriculture in the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain massif – part of the range that forms the eastern foothills of the Himalayas. There are few places in the world where the execution of our calling to “work and take care” is more beautiful than in these ancient mountain villages.
Gen 2:15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
Work is work
I believe that there is a major move of God coming through the workplace – a move that will become known as the workplace revival. Therefore, in many of the posts I will be posting in the future, I will be talking about the blessing of work, and how God wants to restore that to us. In the process, you will notice that I seem to sometimes refer to “normal” work – i.e. the work most of us do every day to earn a living, and sometimes to “spiritual work”, such as ministry, but also having a regular quiet time, reading your Bible, going to church, and maybe ministering on the side. Now you probably will also notice that I seem to sometimes distinguish these two, as I have done in the previous sentence, but at other times I use them almost interchangeable, and may even seem to be confusing them, or blurring the line of differentiation between them.
This is not the result of some inner confusion I have not been able to resolve. It is done very deliberately, and here is why: When God first created the Garden of Eden, we see a process whereby He started working – He started creating this creation. He then created mankind in His image, and handed over some of His work to Adam, then noted the need for a helper, and created the helper. Now we had team work, and the social and relational element was introduced into work.
And then we see that God came in the evening after the fall, walking in the garden. Remember the garden was the workplace – the place that God had given them to take care of. It would appear from the text in Genesis that this was not an unusual thing to do, and it is described in a very pleasant and intimate way. The picture of walking in the cool of the evening, through this beautiful garden, and He calls to this partner that He has created – the man who was supposed to now be doing part of the work.
Our work and our relationship with God is inextricably intertwined
So I see that God’s relationship with us, and the work we should be doing, is very closely intertwined – they are not separate things. Therefore all the work we do, have a spiritual element to them. Similarly, Adam’s relationship with Eve became that of husband and wife but it was also very much a relationship of worker and helper – of a partnership in this work from God. She was given to him by God, to do this work.
And so the work relationship between them also has this characteristic of a relationship between two people, but that relationship is intertwined with the work relationship they also have with God, who gave them the work, and gives them this place to work, and gives them to each other to work with.
So as we move forward through the next chapters where we are going to look at the blessing of work, and our relationship with God with regards to work, you will notice that I keep spiritual work and “normal” work very close to each other. I believe that the restoration of the blessing that God wants work to be in our lives, is inseparably intertwined with our relationship with Him. You cannot experience the blessing of work without also answering the call of God walking in the cool of the evening and saying, “Adam, Adam, where are you?”
To find God's blessing in your work, you must respond to His call
You must respond to that call, allow yourself to be found by Him, and through the work that Jesus has done for us, you will experience God restoring to you the blessing that He has created work to be.
My name is Ashton Fourie.