Proclaiming #7 – Milking cows and office work

I once heard that Luther said something like “Even the milk-maid can tend her cows to glory of God.” I don’t know where he said that (if you do, please let me know). I can imagine that being a milkmaid was the most dreary, lowly job of Luther’s day. The equivalent of an office grunt, maybe. One of those jobs where you sometimes think to yourself in the morning, what is the use? What am I contributing?

But even the most dreary job can give us an opportunity to proclaim on what ground we hope to stand. It’s about about the manner in which we carry our job out. So let’s assume we’re milkmaids, office grunts, cashiers or whatever. How can we proclaim a radical foundation for life while doing jobs that are completely normal?
– By doing those jobs for the good of society. Your milk feeds the people in the village. The software your company makes benefits C-Stores all over the nation. The products your store sells actually do help people and fulfill needs. Keep the good of society in mind. If your job is not actually a benefit to society…well maybe you need a different job.
– Work in harmony with your co-workers. A divisive Christian is a blot on Christ’s image. The follower of Christ ought to be the most peaceable, most friendly member of the workforce. Anything less is…normal.
– Work hard. Laziness in a Christian is another blot. Poor work ethic betrays a deep problem of sloth and apathy. Care about the job and do it as if God is your boss. Because he is. Indeed, he is using you to disseminate whatever benefits to society your role is providing.
– Work with wonder. Look at the cow you are milking and wonder at it. Look at the software you are supporting, and thank God for creating the human mind that put it together. Look at the people you are serving, and remember the image of God stamped on them. Wonder at the monotonous, because nothing is monotonous.
– Work with thankfulness and generosity. Especially in this time of recession, think of those who have no job. Lend a hand. Be cheerful and don’t complain over petty, insignificant thinks like mix-ups, work politics, money and the like.

Secular work gives us all an amazing chance to show what we’re standing on. So work! Milk! Support and serve. On we go.

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