Connect Jesus' powerful messages in the book of Matthew to your work.
As Christians, we stand with one foot in the human world, where our work may be subject to ungodly expectations, and at the same time we are subjects of God's kingdom, committed to his values and expectations. In telling the story of Jesus, Matthew shows us how to navigate the human world until God’s Kingdom is fully realized on earth.
As we step into God’s kingdom in our places of work, we hope to become more like those named as blessed—more meek, more merciful, more hungry for righteousness, more apt to make peace, and so on!
At work, we make snap judgments because we lack the time or inclination to collect true information. Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount tells us that these judgments are not merely an inevitable byproduct of working with others, but an important moral issue.
Through Jesus' yoke, we feel his pull, his guidance, his direction. Far from being a burden on us, Jesus describes this type of work as restful.
Jesus gives us a template for dealing with someone who has wronged us. He lays out a process that begins with seeking one-on-one to be reconciled. Often, attentive listening leads to the discovery of a mutually acceptable resolution. If it doesn’t, then the others with the appropriate skills and authority are asked to get involved.
To love a neighbor, as yourself, may require taking risks that loom large when undertaken only for the benefit of someone else and perhaps that is why Jesus joins “love your neighbor as yourself” with “love the Lord” in what is called the “greatest” commandment.
The meaning of the parable of the talents extends far beyond financial investments. God has given each person a wide variety of gifts, and he expects us to employ those gifts in his service.
Jesus’ passion is God’s gut-wrenching intervention in the grit and grime of our ragged lives and work. In it, Jesus took the reality of human work – both the good and the harrowing – and not only participated in it, but used it to make something new.
The Gospel of Matthew teaches us that the Christian way is to put our entire life, including our work life, at the service of God’s kingdom, which Christ is bringing to earth even now. Christians should rightly be engaged in creating structures that reflect the kingdom of God in all realms of life, the workplace included.