“My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”
John 4:34, NIV*
Monday I had a wonderful visit with two friends whose day jobs are in Christian social ministries. They’re involved in helping people through Opportunity International and the Salvation Army. It can be exhausting, but it fulfills them. When they share their stories, you can hear their passion.
Sometimes we can think of doing God’s work only in terms of recognized, organized ministry. We dismiss our regular lives. But I think the type of work Jesus talks about in today’s verse happens anywhere: on the job (sacred or secular), at home, in a chance encounter at the grocery checkout.
In context, the verse refers to Jesus’ talk with the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s Well. It wasn’t a planned teaching time or public event. Not on the group’s ‘official’ agenda. But it was part of God’s agenda, and it was His work.
Our days come pre-filled for the most part: work, home, appointments, whatever. If that’s where God has us, then that’s where He wants us to work with Him, however mundane the task. Or however inconvenient the interruption He allows.
There’s something about the routine and the everyday that dulls my attention. Meal preparation and household chores, even conversation around the family table, feel like the same-old-same-old. But shouldn’t each thing I do for my loved ones—for my employer if I’m working—be truly done for God? Isn’t each conversation a chance to show His interest in the other person?
In that case, it’s all God’s work if I can only see it. God’s work, an offering to Him. Even if it’s peeling potatoes or scrubbing toilets. Or taking a coffee break with a friend.
Father God, who sent Jesus into the world to do Your will and who has sent us to do the same, take us out of ourselves and make us mindful of You and Your ways. Help us live for You, and teach us to be on the lookout for Your leading in our daily lives. Feed us with the satisfaction of serving You.