Work Hard, Trust God, Go To Sleep

God tells us to work as hard as we can, yet trust him for the results. ?We are to exert, sweat, think, plan, labor and strain, yet with peace in our hearts:

Unless the LORD builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early
and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
for he gives to his beloved sleep. (Psalm 127:1-2)

Those who build a house work hard, yet the Lord must give them success. ?Those who guard a city stay awake and alert, yet ultimately the Lord must protect the city. ?We should work with all our might, then trust God for the results.

Parents must do all they are able to train their children to know the Lord, yet ultimately it’s the Lord who saves.? Worship teams should rehearse and strive for the most excellent sound they can achieve, yet God must lift people’s hearts. Those in business should produce the best products and service possible, yet it?s God who blesses with success.

One way we show our faith in our Father is to rest. We can rise early and work 18-hour days and ?eat the bread of anxious toil,? ignoring our families and health. ?Or we can work full days, go home, rest, and trust God to care for us.? God ?gives to his beloved sleep.? ?While we enjoy God’s gift of sleep, we trust that God will build our house, watch our city and provide bread for us.

If you?re an artist, work hard at your craft. ?Paint the best paintings you can. ?Take the best photos you are capable of.? If you’re a song writer, write, rewrite, edit and re-edit. ?If you?re a cook, give your customers the best cuisine in the county. ?Policemen, guard your city with all your wits. ?Teachers, teach with creativity and energy and joy. ?Athletes, train hard, practice hard, play hard. ?Whether you?re a grocery store greeter or a computer programmer, do it with godly vigor.

Then when it?s time to go home, go home. ?Forget about your work. ?Rest.? And go to sleep in faith.

photo by flyzipper

Comments

  1. Elaine says

    What a blessing to know it's not all up to us! We have our part; we have our responsibility before the Lord but it is He Who makes much of our feeble efforts. Thank You, Father!

    I think I will go to bed now. :-)

  2. Eric G Wan says

    It was funny I got this in my email this morning when I woke up at 6am, and was ironic because I wanted to go back to sleep. But back to the point, I really enjoyed this post here and it was a tremendous encouragement to start out my week with Ps 127.

    It reminds of what Jesus said in Mat 11:28: "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." You are right! To rest is a way to show our faith because we are depending on God instead of ourselves to accomplish things by stopping and just trusting God will provide. I was struggling with understanding what to do with God's will and what we should do. I almost bought into believing God's will equals me doing nothing because I can't change anything. But I really get it now that God's will is for us to be like Phil 3:10 :"that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death." By that, we must work hard as in James 2:17: "So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead." May we all can say that we have learned to rest and relax so we can be more efficient and effective in the Lord.

    Thank you Mark for sharing this and I love your blog!

  3. Eric G Wan says

    It was funny I got this in my email this morning when I woke up at 6am, and was ironic because I wanted to go back to sleep. But back to the point, I really enjoyed this post here and it was a tremendous encouragement to start out my week with Ps 127.

    It reminds of what Jesus said in Mat 11:28: "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." You are right! To rest is a way to show our faith because we are depending on God instead of ourselves to accomplish things by stopping and just trusting God will provide. I was struggling with understanding what to do with God's will and what we should do. I almost bought into believing God's will equals me doing nothing because I can't change anything. But I really get it now that God's will is for us to be like Phil 3:10 :"that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death." By that, we must work hard as in James 2:17: "So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead." May we all can say that we have learned to rest and relax so we can be more efficient and effective in the Lord.

    Thank you for sharing this and I love your blog!

    • MarkAltrogge says

      Hi Eric,

      Thanks for your encouraging words and your comments. You're right – rest shows our faith because we are depending on God, not ourselves – well said!

  4. Joanna says

    I really needed to read this because I've been homeschooling my sons for 8 years. I recently had something hurt me in regards to this area, feeling that all my hard work in planning lessons, long hours of prepping & grading, and sacrificing my career (along with frequent shopping trips for cute outfits and way more money) was for nothing. Thank you for reminding me that I originally began this because I felt God wanted me to go through this journey with my sons. It helps to remember that it is all for Him and to Him – AND from Him.

    • MarkAltrogge says

      Hi Joanna,

      When I read your comments I thought of 1 CO 15:58: Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

      Your labor of love has not been in vain, Joanna. Your long hours and your sacrifices will have eternal rewards. I am so glad my wife gave up a career in nursing to home school our children – she did it through high school for 5 kids. I tell her I'll be polishing her crowns in heaven. "it is all for Him and to Him – AND from Him. " – Excellent!

  5. says

    So good to hear encouragement like this! John MacArthur presented a similarly-themed talk about the "Theology of Sleep" at last year's T4G conference. I'm thankful that results aren't up to me – all I have to do is easy part: the hard work! :)

    • MarkAltrogge says

      Hi Blaine – yep, that was an excellent message particularly about preaching the gospel and evangelism if I recall, but it certainly applies to any labor we do. I like what you said – "all I have to do is easy part: the hard work!" Very good!

  6. Kevin Griffiths says

    what do you mean by hard work. the bible says even Godly thoughts, Godly actions, Godly circumstances, and Godly results are because of God not because of you. One can only boast in Christ.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>