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Peanuts, Pay and Productivity

by Katopeka Nkhoma  
3/21/2017 / Career

No one likes working for peanuts. That's a universal truth you can take to the bank! No one likes being taken for granted and short changed either. Whatever kind of work we do, we all want progress and fulfilment. Work is our primary preoccupation and understanding how to get the maximum benefit and satisfaction out of it is of utmost importance. A disgruntled worker is a miserable human being! 
Let's look into the scriptures and see how we can be happy, satisfied and fulfilled workers.
Genesis 2:15
And the LORD God took the man, and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.
God gave Adam a kingdom but just because Adam was the king in that kingdom, he was not exempt from work. Contrary to popular belief work is not a curse, it is actually a blessing. Work came before the fall and everything that was before the fall is a blessing.
Ecclesiastes 5:18-20
Behold that which I have seen: it is good and fitting for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labor that he takes under the sun all the days of his life, which God gives him: for this is his lot. Every man also to whom God has given riches and wealth, and has given him power to eat of it, and to accept his lot, and to rejoice in his labor, this is the gift of God. For he shall not much remember the days of his life, because God keeps him busy with the joy of his heart.
   Work is a blessing that is to be enjoyed by all but sadly only a few people enjoy their labor. Work is a heritage we have received from our heavenly Father for He too works (Isaiah 43:13) and because He works He receives the fruit of His labor.
Deuteronomy 28:8
The LORD shall command the blessing upon you in the storehouses, and in all that you set your hand unto, and He shall bless you in the land which the LORD your God gives you.
   It is of paramount importance for you to know that God blesses that which you set your hands to do. That is how God prospers you; through your work. In order to understand this principle of work we need to go back to the place where work was ordained by God. When God made Adam work was a blessing, a gift from God. After the fall another kind of work came into play, a cursed kind of work. It is these two that we need to understand and make sure ours is the blessed and profitable kind.

Genesis 2:15(NKJV)
Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
God made man and God ordained man to work, to tend the garden.
Genesis 2:16
And the LORD God commanded the man saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat”
   Why did God give Adam the right to freely eat from the garden? Because Adam worked in the garden therefore it was his right to reap where he had sown. I want you to realize that Adam was only free to eat from the garden and not any other place on the earth. He had no right to eat from where he had not worked.
Ecclesiastes 3:9-13 (NKJV)
What profit has the worker from that in which he labors? I have seen the God given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end. I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy all the good of all his labor- it is the gift of God. 
  This is tending, working under the anointing of God, the power to get wealth. Whatever you work at, whatever you tend, God beautifies. Whatever God has given you to tend you enjoy. Many are frustrated because they are tending the wrong things. They are not employing the gifts God gave them therefore they are tending the wrong garden.
 “Tenders” are those that appreciate and employ their gifts, therefore all they do is stand in the garden God has put them in and tend it. God in turn opens up His good storehouse for such people and blesses the work of their hands.
Enter the serpent, enter the curse…..

Genesis 3:17-19
And unto Adam He said, because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: cursed is the ground for your sake; in sorrow shall you eat of it all the days of your life; also thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to you; and you shall eat the plants of the field; in the sweat of your face shall you eat bread, till you return unto the ground; for out of it were you taken: for dust you are, and unto dust shall you return.
   Man fell, man was cursed, the ground was cursed and man moved from Eden to the field. Adam moved from tending to toiling. What is the difference between tending and toiling?
Genesis 2:15 (NKJV)
Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
Tend means to work, it is pleasurable, it is a blessing.
Genesis 3:17-19 (NKJV)
Then to Adam He said, “because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: “Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.
Toil is extreme labor that produces little fruit but more thorns and thistles. It implies struggling and sorrow, it is a curse. 
Proverbs 23:4-5
Labor not to be rich: cease from your own wisdom. Will you set your eyes upon that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.
   This is toiling, laboring in your own strength and using your own wisdom and understanding. Toiling does not bring wealth; labor not to be rich, rather seek to understand your place in the garden and tend. Whatever you toil for will grow wings and fly away because you are working under the curse of “toil”. That is why many people complain that they work extremely hard yet they produce little, or even nothing. What they work for flies away from them.
 “Toilers” are those that work extremely hard and produce very little because they do not exercise and employ their gifts. This is a serious curse.

Before we proceed it is of utmost importance for us to understand the term “work”. I know we should have defined it in the beginning but hey, let's  dare to be different! 
It may sound like an obvious word since we are used to hearing and using it so often. Unfortunately today’s definition of work does not mean what God originally meant it to mean. For most people the word work means a job and that is fair and fine but it is not complete. Let us go back to the beginning and see how God meant it to be for us work-wise.
Genesis 2:15-16 (N.K.J.V)
Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat”
As said earlier work is not a curse, it is a responsibility and a blessing that should be enjoyed. The first thing we need to notice is that Adam was not working for anyone, he was working for himself. In other words you need to reach a level where you are independent enough to work your own garden in life, a place where you know that all your efforts are for the sake of you and your family. This is what we usually term a business. According to God’s plan we were all supposed to be tending our own gardens here on earth. Each of us should have a project or business we call our own.
 Am I saying it is wrong to be employed? Not at all. It is good to be employed. So what am I saying? Am I contradicting myself? We will delve deeper into this issue in our next issue. Stay turned don't miss it for anything!!

Kato Nkhoma is a seasoned Pastor with circa 15 years under his belt. He is also a prolific teacher of the word, author and freelance writer. A husband to 1wife and father of 2 amazing children makes him a happy family man.

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