It was an unusually warm winter night. I had just left meeting with someone whose story was beyond inspirational. “Knock me over with a feather”, kind of inspirational. The sun was setting and the sky had turned a canvas gorgeous golden hues. I was processing all that I had just heard while gazing at that sunset, and all I could think to say to God was,
“I want my something to count for something.”
I don’t know where that thought came from. I was busy, and my work was succeeding, I was making great advancements with Working Women of Faith, and yet I was questioning the value of everything I was doing.
In the light of someone who had been through a great trial and had come out the other side with work challenges, but a greater faith, I somehow felt that all of my endeavors were lacking something. My something didn’t count for something.
I went home and wrote that on the chalkboard by my door,
“Make your something count for something.”
Big and bold lettering, it’s the last thing I see before I head off to work and the first thing I see when I come back home.
It started me on a thinking journey. An adventure to discover what something I want my something to count for. If my something is my work that God has called me to do in the marketplace, how do I-how do we make that count for something more than just work.
The reason so many people are dissatisfied with their work, disengaged in the workplace and looking for more from their company and their career is that they want their work to count for something.
For the believer, it starts with knowing and believing that your work matters to God. That He values your work as a tool in His hand to further His kingdom. Your position in XYZ company is just as important to God and essential to His work as the Pastor in the pulpit and the Missionary in the field. It is the reason behind your “something”.
It also means that you are doing the work that God created you to do. Finding your workplace calling is essential and it is your “something”. Determining that calling is imperative for your satisfaction, joy and fruitfulness. It is a process that needs to take place in order for your something to count for something.
I have not shied away from sharing these messages with you. I believe whole-heartedly that the marketplace is the last great mission field and we are called to minister as such in whatever place or position God has called us to.
I know my work matters and that I am in the place God has called me to be, yet there is another element to having your something count for something, and that is the eternality of your work.
Work done for my glory goes away.
Work done for God’s glory lasts for eternity.
So not only does it matter to view my work through God’s eyes and to be obedient to His calling of where I work, it matters that I do my work for Him and Him alone.
In 1 Corinthians 3, we hear about the fire of purification that our work will one day pass through. Every person’s work will be shown for what it really is. Work built on the foundation of Jesus Christ, according to this passage will pass through the fire and remain, just as precious stones and silver and gold would remain intact after going through a fire. All work done for any other reason will be burned up like wood, hay, and stubble. I don’t need to tell you how those things fare after being in a fire.
[Tweet “Eternal work all comes down to motivation. “]
What is the reason behind the work you are doing? Is it to have more money, to buy more things or retire early? Is it to gain recognition from colleagues and friends? Is it to be noticed as a remarkable leader in your field? If so, you are not alone. Most people in the world want those things.
But you are not like most people. You are, according to God, set apart for His exclusive use. You belong to God, He bought you with the price of His Son.
If the reason for our “something” (even if we know that “something“ is a calling from God for His purposes) is for anything other than God’s glory, it will all be burnt ash floating in the wind someday. Do you really want to work this hard on something only to have it burn up in the end? I don’t.
That is why it’s written on the black board by my door. It’s a constant reminder of the “why” behind the what. It’s a heart check; a motivation check; a smoke detector for my work.
So every day before I leave I can say, “What you do today can last forever.” And when I get home I can ask, “What did you do that will last, and what will burn?” It’s a visual, physical cue to remind me to:
Make my something count for something.
What about you?
How do you check your motivation behind the work that you do?
What steps can you take daily to make sure your work lasts for eternity.