Working Hard & Hardly Working – Don’t work

Kingdom Principle:  The Blessedness of the Kingdom is a gift of foolishness

When you have it, you live to give it away, if you don’t, you work to get what you can.

Micah 6:1-8 Psalm 15 1 Corinthians 1:18-31 Matthew 5:1-12

If you are working hard to make life work… while seeing others simply be blessed; you are on the outside of the kingdom looking in…  If you are hardly working to your life’s work… while others are working hard you are on the outside of the kingdom.

It’s not about working hard or hardly working it’s about being blessed and being foolish. Sometimes in the Kingdom you work 10x harder than others and your only reward is to be working in the kingdom. This may seem foolish; no extra pay, recognition, or compensation. (Matt 20:1-16)  Sometimes in the Kingdom you are hardly working when you are blessed beyond all comprehension (this is called being at rest), however if you are hardly working and while waiting to be blessed – the blessing will never come.  (this is called being lazy)

Being in the Kingdom is to be Blessed… rather than working toward being blessed.  The Beatitudes begin and end (verses 3,10-11) differently than each one in the middle (verses 4-9). Blessed are the poor in spirit and Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness theirs IS the Kingdom of heaven… It is already given. Each other Be-attitude or Blessed are – will be…. Therefore the Blessing of the Kingdom is complete at the beginning and the end. It is already received. Yet – there is an entirely further blessedness that is yet to come and is discovered in the process of life with the King. This leads to the Foolishness of those who claim the Cross of Christ as the Power of God in their lives. The cross is the upside-down means of God. God choose the weak, the foolish, the lowly, and the despised, to demonstrate his Righteousness, Holiness and Power of redemption. It is backwards or a paradox.  God sent His Son to save the world not condemn the world, (John 3:17) and the plan of salvation goes through the cross not a crowd, it’s glory is a crown of thorns, not a crown of jewels.

Who will get this? Who will accept such madness? Who will climb up a mountain side to listen to a wandering prophet? Who will do what is required, when what is required is not even possible by one’s own strength? Who can act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God? Only those who are wanting to be foolish by the standards of this world. The rest will work hard to overcome the obstacles, or hardly work and consider the whole thing foolish. This foolish is the foolishness of the world, rather than embracing the foolishness of God. For the message of the cross says – Hard work will get you nowhere – Now – Get to work.

All of the texts this week, draw forth one’s ability to express  identity. Identity is found within a person, it is lodged in their soul  and redeemed by their spirit. However, for most people – life is lived just the opposite our identity is found by looking in the mirror and measuring our success on the outside.  When you ask a person to tell you about who they are – most will answer by telling you “What they do for work”…  then proceed to talk about their families (I am married or single, have # kids….)  and other accomplishments (went to this school, worked here for so long…) These are not identity, they are labels and accumulation of idols. (that’s harsh but often too true)  Imagine if a business leader was asked, “Tell me about yourself” and answered: I speak truth from my heart, I do no wrong to my neighbor, I despise a vile person, I will keep an promise even if it hurts me, and I lean money to the poor without interest. The response would be a show stopper, that was not be the answer they were looking for….  In fact if that was your “elevator speech” I wonder how much business you would gain. You might end up “hardly working” and at that very moment – You might receive the greatest blessing the Father has ever lavished on you.  This is madness, foolish according to the expectations of the world.

In this world – If you work for something – enjoy it – for you have received your full reward (Matt. 6:2,5; Luke 6:24). If God gave you something, enjoy it, for it is your reward. Your very life is to be enjoyed as you live into the righteousness of  Christ, and the blessedness of the cross. For God’s  gifts come in the form of  Blessedness, Foolishness, Righteousness, Holiness, and Redemption. Therefore if you have such things boast in the Lord of such things… but remember – You cannot work to attain such things. Therefore what is required of you is to live from place of humility and hospitality,  that your faithfulness displays great acts of God’s favor.  What is required,  is not being required in order for you to attain great acts of God’s favor, for such things are gifts.  When someone is performing what is required in order to attain blessedness, it is empty religion repetition.

Finally,

In this stance of servantleadership our hope grows and is anchored in the power of God to resurrect and redeem what is dead and lost. Therefore we mourn, we are meek, and we hunger and thirst believing that the pain, suffering and struggles of this world is temporary. We have died to this world; our blessedness has already been received in receiving the Kingdom of Heaven. Then as we go out to the world, although it is foolishness we shall be merciful, pure, and peacemakers for we desire alone to dwell in the presence of the Almighty God. For in that place we shall never be shaken.

Where or for what do you wish you didn’t have to work so hard?

What are you working for to receive?  Provision, Protection, Peace or another….  (often a stroke from the world to validate your Identity – which it told you, you could never attain)

The King promises that His presence will be your Provision, Protection and Peace… therefore if you are working hard to attain such things, you are stepping out from under the Rule and Reign of God…. which is to miss the Blessedness of the Kingdom of Heaven. You may think this is merely a foolish thought – and if so – you have just proved my point…  for this is the call of God unto the Kingdom.

Click here to see how the 10 Commandments, The Be-Attitudes, The Lord’s Prayer and Romans 12 all align to proclaim the same truth about Servant Leadership and living a life of love and gratitude.

About chaplaincasey

In my Community I am a Chaplain, Coach and Catalyst.
This entry was posted in Epiphany, Year A and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Working Hard & Hardly Working – Don’t work

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