Arghhhh!!! Work sometimes stresses me out so much that I want to take my computer and turn the screen toward the wall, just like putting a child in timeout until it learns to behave. This was especially true this week when the pressure was on to prepare for inspection of my work. Just when I thought all was well, a glitch – probably pointing back to my miscommunication with this binary speaking, error messaging, bleeping, cyber silencer -dropped hundreds of brain-draining, meticulous eloquence of thought into the miniature round basket in the background’s left corner, snatching hours of deliberate labor in a nanosecond of apathy.
I wonder if the work went smoothly for the artisans, craftsmen, weavers, perfumers, and others building that first Tabernacle that God designed. I used to hold the view that the pastors, the musicians, the maintenance crew, and so many others involved in the daily upkeep of our own sanctuary were somehow more holy and at peace because their work was devoted to the house of God. I still have tender thoughts towards churches, in sync with Psalm 26:8 “Lord, I have loved the habitation of Your house, and the place where Your glory dwells.”
In fact, I like to watch the podcast of a service streamed from Trinity Fellowship Church http://www.tfchurch.org/ , the place of worship that I attended for over 30 years before moving to another state. When we started attending there, we met in a small church building quickly outgrowing the crowded sanctuary of about 300 people, I never envisioned the again bursting at the seams House of Worship that now seats more than 10,000. Yet when I watch these services, listen to the worship, see the glory of God on familiar faces and the declaration of praise with uplifted hands of the congregation, I see a parallel to that first Tabernacle of God; I see years of devoted work to create a setting for God’s Presence to dwell.
I say that I use to think only those who served in the House of God emanated holiness because I now believe that every Christian’s work is an offering to God, even that which serves a secular purpose. God gifts each of us to perform our work just as He did to those building the first Tabernacle. Exodus 36:1 says, “The gifted artisans in whom the Lord has put wisdom and understanding, to know how to do all manner of work for the service of the sanctuary, shall do according to all that the Lord commanded.” How secure and humble I feel when I focus on God’s good gifts and leave off obsessing on all the stress about my performance. So it is with a sigh of relief when I read and remember the truth in God’s Word: Philippians 4:8-9
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble,whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy –meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
Guess I’ll bring a soft cloth to work next week and wipe all the smudges off of that expectant face on my desk…a more appropriate act of holiness than my actions at our last signoff.