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The Beauty of Boundaries 11: Boundaries at Work

The Beauty of Boundaries Day 11 – Boundaries at Work

“The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” (Genesis 2:15, ESV)

“Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.” (Titus 2:7-8, ESV)

“Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.” (John 6:27, ESV)

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” (Colossians 3:23-24, ESV)

Today we are going to discuss the topic of setting boundaries at work. The most obvious one involves setting boundaries on our work time so that we do not become workaholics. But we should also set appropriate boundaries on the other end so that we can be model employees in our place of work.

From the beginning, God designed man to work. In the first verse in our reading, we can see that God set His newly created man, Adam, over the garden of Eden in order to work it and keep it. This work was not the toil we know it to be because of the fall of mankind, but it was work nonetheless. Thousands of years later, we still have the responsibility to work. The question is, how much should we be working and what for?

One theme throughout the writings of Paul in the New Testament is that Christians should be hard workers, not just for Christ but also in our respective occupations. Therefore, we should make sure that we set appropriate boundaries so that we can do just that. With many jobs in today’s world having some sort of virtual component, it is easier than ever to slack off without anyone being the wiser. However, we should complete our job to the best of our ability whether or not anyone is watching. It would be wise to limit distractions, to set aside hours specifically for work, and to do our best to complete our work to the best of our abilities.

Now that we’ve established the need to work and work hard, we should also be careful to not go overboard. There is work that should be done today but there is always work that can be done tomorrow. I once had a wise manager at work tell me that the tax return I was working on would still be there in the morning. That was her way of saying that it was time for me to log off for the night! It is important to work hard, but it’s also important to not let work overtake our schedules such that it becomes what we base our lives around. It is very easy to say “yes” to too many things at work which take away our time with family, friends, and time spent with the Lord. If your job does not allow for that, is it time to reconsider your place of employment? That is something I am actually going through right now!

It is my prayer that each one of us would desire to set healthy boundaries at work while also performing our jobs to the best of our abilities. It is important that we be model employees, while also fulfilling our responsibilities at home and at church. It is not likely that we will achieve this balance 100% of the time, but it is something we can continue to strive towards.

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