Paul was an Apostle of Jesus, and he trusted in the power of God. He sought guidance through prayer and the advice of other believers. As a result, his steps were made with wisdom and faith that completely trusted God to guide him and work through him wherever he was directed. The sovereignty and omnipotence of God were the power that made his ministry successful.
Paul also worked hard. Acts chapter 18 verse 2-3 tell us that his occupation was a tentmaker. The manual labor needed to cut, sew, and assemble a tent was required to put food on the table. Once in each of his letters to the Church in the city of Thessalonica, he reminds the believers of his work. “Surely you remember, brothers and sisters, our toil and hardship; we worked night and day in order not to be a burden to anyone while we preached the gospel of God to you” (1 Thessalonians 2:9 – NIV 2011). “…nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we worked night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you” (2 Thessalonians 3:8 – NIV 2011). The Apostle Paul took his work seriously and gave a total effort to each tent that he made. It took toil and hard work to make ends meet, but he and his companions did it.
He also commended the virtue of hard work to the believers in Rome. There he mentions hard work done by and for those in the Church. Inside this great letter of faith, he ends in chapter 16 by saying, “Greet Mary, who worked very hard for you.” (Romans 16:6 – NIV 2011) and “Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, those women who work hard in the Lord. Greet my dear friend Persis, another woman who has worked very hard in the Lord.” (Romans 16:12 – NIV 2011) Paul loved to see people working hard in the Lord also.
Trusting in God to provide, guide, and bless are cornerstones of the Christian faith. So is getting up each day and giving a full effort to the tasks at hand. Whether it be manual labor or serving God, or both, there is no substitute for hard work. I have to remind myself of this every Monday when I see the large amount of work ahead that week. I say my prayers and then roll up my sleeves and get busy. I hope you can find the motivation to do the same thing today.