Pr. 23:4: “Do not overwork to be rich; because of your own understanding, cease!”
A month after Donnie and I were married, I accepted a higher-paying promotion at work. I soon learned; however, that promotions are not always worth accepting. Although my manager promised to fill the position I previously held, there was a significant amount of stalling and I worked both positions for over a year.
I would wake up at 4:30 a.m. to make the long commute to be at work at 6:00. Most days I would arrive back home between 6:00 and 8:00 p.m. Add to that the numerous times I had to fill in for another shift, arriving home at 2:00 a.m., only to get back up and start over.
I averaged 65 hours a week during that time, eventually beginning to break down physically, and also missing out on critical time with my new husband. When did we have time to enjoy one another? What should have been our “honeymoon period” was entirely too difficult for us. That experience is definitely one of those I would go back and do differently, if given the chance. No amount of money or supervising experience was worth all that I sacrificed during that time.
If we really take God at His word, believing that, “my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus,” then we can see that no promotion, position, company, or paycheck will ever be what gets us through. Our provision comes from the Lord, and no matter where we work, or what our title, that will always be true. What’s more is that if we tithe a portion back to Him, He will faithfully rebuke the devourer for our sakes, and not allow him to destroy the fruit of our labor.
Worrying about what we will eat, what we will wear, what car we will drive, what we will buy our kids for Christmas…those worries are just a waste of our time. Jesus said, “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things (our basic needs) shall be added to you.” Mt. 6:33. He said, “what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him.” Mt. 7:9-11
If you are faced with the decision to over-work to become rich, remember the Lord’s promises and His enduring faithfulness, and choose to cease. It is not worth the sacrifices of family relationships, health, your relationship with God, or your time to be able to do God’s work. Understanding God’s faithfulness, and the effects of your sacrificing choices, work as unto the Lord, and then cease! Allow God to show His hand of provision in your life.