Making a distinction between “God’s work” and “our work” comes all too easy. Prayer, reading the Bible, gathering for worship, being on a church committee… that’s “God’s work.” Mowing the yard, doing a job for an employer, giving the kids a bath, balancing the checkbook… that’s “our work.”
Tish Harrison-Warren shares that “the Christian faith teaches that all work that is not immoral or unethical is a part of God’s kingdom mission” (Liturgy of the Ordinary, p. 92). I was reminded of this the other day as I was trying to empty my email inbox. More accurately, I was just trying to read all my “unread” emails. Reading and responding to emails is not something I normally consider all that “pastoral.” It’s just something that has to be done.
That particular morning, I’d received an email sharing concerns and a question about “re-opening” our church building to activities in the current COVID-19 situation. My initial response was to quickly answer the question, hit the “send” button, and move on to the next email. But something made me wait.
Where is God? What is God doing? Who does God need me to be?
I looked again at the email sent to me. I could see the love this person has for our church. I could sense how God was working in them to be a part of us appropriately moving to “re-open.” So, I went back and rewrote my response in a way that to the best of my ability was being the person God needed me to be. In all of that I was blessed.
And I wonder… If God can work in something as ordinary as email, what might God be able to do if you and I saw all that we do as “God’s work?”