If anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either. For we hear that some among you are … doing no work at all … Such persons we command … to work in quiet fashion. – 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12 NASB
Even as a young boy, William Bradford hungered for a fresh experience of God. Born in 1590 in England, he became a leader of the Pilgrims, Christians who decided to immigrate to America in order to worship God in freedom.
They faced incredible dangers. Bradford experienced personal tragedy when his wife drowned in Provincetown Harbor in 1620 while he was exploring the New World. Yet he remained convinced that he was obeying God’s call. Problems continued after they landed in what is now Plymouth, Massachusetts. They struggled and many died.
A recent book about these Pilgrims describes a breakthrough that occurred in April 1623. Bradford “decided that each household should be assigned its own plot to cultivate.” It was understood “that each family kept whatever it grew.” The change in attitude was “stunning.” Suddenly families worked harder than before. They still struggled, but “never again starved” as they had during the first few years in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
In his interaction with Christians in Thessalonica, Paul, too, stressed the importance of hard work. Some were “leading an undisciplined life” and being bad examples to other Christians. Paul urged them to realize, “If anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat.”
Today is a day to celebrate the importance of our labor. Make sure that you are being faithful with the resources He has given you. Be a faithful worker, doing everything unto the Lord.
PrayerFather, I dedicate my time, talents, and treasures to You. Help me to be faithful with all that You have given me. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Extended Reading2 Thessalonians 3