Overcome the Anxiousness of Work

Overcome the Anxiousness of Work

I love completing a project with success! And, it frustrates me when one gets the better of me. I also love helping families accomplish their priorities. I’m an efficient and productive worker driven by my task list. I know God has designed me this way (“for I am fearfully and wonderfully made” Psalm 139:14.) But, along with my “accomplishment” mentality, an anxiousness to succeed and move forward can creep in. It’s a dangerous cycle. The task list doesn’t end.

Overcoming the anxiousness of work first requires an understanding of the Scriptural prescriptions for work, rest and God’s accompanying promises.

Work is necessary to a functioning society. Scripture goes so far as to say that those who are able to work but will not, should not be assisted because it takes away from those who really need help (2 Thessalonians 3). Beyond supporting ourselves, work is designed as a service to God. Colossians 3:23–24 says, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.”

With these responsibilities, we can feel pressure to provide for a family, meet the demands of an employer or customer, master our trade, or just complete a task successfully. Work can be difficult! (Genesis 3:19)

Recognizing this reality doesn’t doom us however, because this same God, in His graciousness, let’s us put the burden on Him. He has the plan. He has the resources. He has the ability. We have to move forward and trust Him. “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)

God created the universe in six days then rested on the seventh as a pattern to follow not just chronologically but in our perspective of work. Walking in obedience is enough. Getting it all done on our timing with the results we might expect can cause an unnecessary anxiousness. God gives all that is needed and more to those who trust in His plan through adverse circumstances.

To overcome anxiousness and live with a balanced, restful perspective of work, remember these keys:

The foundational principle of finances is that God owns it all. He gives, takes away and uses it all for good. That’s a good thing because His ability to take care of you is much greater. In Matthew 6:31, 33 Jesus says “Therefore do not be anxious… But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” In exchange for laying the burden of providing for your own needs on God, He promises to take care of those needs.

Your service to Christ supersedes your service to people. When you serve God well, you serve people well. (Ephesians 6:5–9 expands on this.) Jesus served His Father well and not everyone liked Him or made life easy for Him. Any discord among people you serve can be used as motivation to work toward peace and refine your craft.

Working more hours doesn’t necessarily make you better at your craft. Work with purpose as a wise steward of the time God gives you. Titus 3:8–9 explains the need to spend time on the things that matter and avoid things that distract. “…that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. But avoid foolish controversies…” Excellence is achieved by focusing on that which is truly important and leaving behind that which is not essential to your priorities.

God intends for us to work with effort, passion and consistency while resting in His complete provision. Overcome the anxiousness of work by focusing on the promises of God….

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