Wisdom on Work | Wisdom Wednesday
While work is sometimes (often) a source of stress in our lives, where would we be without it? Work, while difficult, is part and parcel of human nature and serves human dignity. Work enables us to celebrate our gifts and talents from God and empowers us to participate in creation with God. Work is a human right, and those deprived of work are denied dignity and usually a decent livelihood. We know that Jesus worked as a carpenter, and that knowledge can elevate our work (whether physical or intellectual in nature) in our hearts and minds.
In his latest Blink series, When Faith Feels Fragile , Father Scott Hurd spoke about the importance of work in spiritual health:
Pope Francis recently tweeted about the importance of work, but the Catholic Church has a long history of upholding the value of work and the dignity of workers in its teachings on Social Justice (and in way more than 72 characters!). Check out this excerpt from Laborem Exercens ('On Human Work'), Saint John Paul II's 1981 Social Teaching encyclical:
The Church finds in the very first pages of the Book of Genesis the source of her
conviction that work is a fundamental dimension of human existence on earth.
An analysis of these texts makes us aware that they express... the fundamental truths
about man, in the context of the mystery of creation itelf... When man, who had been created
"in the image of God.... male and female", hears the words: "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill
the earth and subdue it", even though these words do not refer directly and explicitly to work,
beyond any doubt they indirectly indicate it as an activity for man to carry out in the world.
Indeed, they show its very deepest essence. Man is the image of God partly through the
mandate received from his Creator to subdue, to dominate, the earth. In carrying out this
mandate, man, every human being, reflects the very action of the Creator of the universe.
Take some time today to be grateful for your work, if you are able, and to pray for those without work. Remember, work is good! A good reminder half way through the week.