Labor Day! According to Wikipedia, “Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”
As a child, I thought it odd that the one day of the year when we honor hard work is a day we don’t do any work. When I became a teenager, I learned that wasn’t quite true. Labor Day is a day that parents take the day off while encouraging (insisting) the children enjoy a day of hard work in the yard!
As a young adult, I smiled to think that Labor Day is when I felt the first pangs indicating our daughter was about to be born. I certainly worked that day and believed Labor Day was aptly named! (Personal note: Happy 26th birthday, baby girl!)
These days as I have aged a few more years, I’m simply thankful to have the day off regardless of what we call it.
I wonder what I’ll think of Labor Day as I continue to grow. As I come and go throughout my work, my ministry, my life, will I become weary of the endless to-do lists? Will I look forward to a day off – a day to rest from chaos and simply be thankful for the work I am called to do on other days? Or will this become a labor of love day – a day when I seek out chores that have been neglected or kept on the back burner for too long?
I suspect that each year might hold a bit of each. Just as I did today, I’ll spend some time being thankful for my work and the work available to others. I’ll thank God for the route drivers and shelf stockers where I find my food. I’ll pray for the teachers and custodians who enrich the lives of our children. I’ll seek blessings for our church staff and family. Then, before the day is over, I may find myself outside enjoying a little yard work that needs my attention.
As I come and go throughout the upcoming Labor Days, I am already thankful that I never journey alone. The promise of Psalm 121:8 is that no matter what we face or where our work takes us, God keeps us safe and guards our paths.
Thank you, God, for your never-ending labor of Love!