In Week 3 of the “Owning Your Everyday Work” sermon series on Sunday, January 26, Pastor Troy Murphy examined what it looks like to make your work an offering to God. Here are some key points from his message:
*There were different types of offerings in the Old Testament:
-A sacrificial offering was bringing to the altar your first fruits for God. It represented your whole self — giving God the whole of who you are.
-A grain offering was recognizing God’s goodness and a voluntary expression of your devotion — giving God all you have.
-A peace offering was committing to the prosperity of others — giving all your relationships to God.
-A sin offering was seeking atonement for unintentional sins, which could easily happen in the Old Testament because there were so many laws to follow.
-A guilt offering was making reparations for your sins.
*In the New Testament Jesus is the sacrificial lamb who pays the price for our sins by dying on the cross (Ephesians 5: 1-2). Old Testament offerings were unblemished lambs; Jesus serves as the New Testament unblemished lamb who was without sin.
*To get an idea of how we make our work an offering, we can look to the story of Daniel (Chapters 1-3) in the Old Testament. Daniel serves as a role model and we learn these principles:
-Trust God in every situation
What would make you stop trusting God? In Daniel’s case, difficult circumstances — no matter how bad it looked — didn’t sway him from putting his trust in God, who is always present. Instead of having a pity party when you face difficulties at work, get inspiration from Daniel and realize that God has you in your situation for a reason.
-Give your best effort: it reveals the value of your offering
Daniel and his friends were stripped of their country and history, yet they chose to give their best effort. Do you bring your best effort to the workplace, even if it isn’t valued? And that applies not just to your craft but also the relationships you cultivate at work.
-Let go of winning and pursue glorifying Him
Daniel conducts himself with love and grace, which allowed God to work through him. It’s not about you in the workplace. When you feel slighted or devalued, remember that your mission is for others to see God in your life. Jesus was poured out like a drink offering (Philippians 2.17).
-Trust God to promote you
Work should not be about getting recognition, money, status, power, etc. It should be about giving your job over to God and allowing Him to use you. (Proverbs 3. 5-6).
*Daniel made an impact on his boss, the king, by the way he conducted himself with integrity and humility. God was doing something greater than anyone could understand in the midst of Daniel’s circumstances. Daniel’s humble offering was noticed. In the same way we should put our jobs on the altar and make them an offering to God. Is your job simply a means to get paid, or are you making it an offering to God?
*How you do your work has great potential to either glorify God or throw mud on his name. If you give your best effort, you can fulfill your purpose and glorify God.