This is actually a saying from the Hutterite community, which I found in the book I just read “I am Hutterite” (see below). I like this saying, although I’m still not sure why, because it’s not the easiest thing to understand… work?…. making life sweet? Shouldn’t that read, ‘Free time makes life sweet’… or me time, or time off, or doing what I want to do makes life sweet?
It really does say work and work is something that I have a lot of. In this busy household there is always more work than can be done in a day and sometimes it overwhelms me. This past winter I can see how my attitude toward all my work was taking a downward spiral and dragging me down. I was feeling resentful towards my family (for making all this work!) and I was feeling pretty darn sorry for myself. This was showing up in being short-tempered with the kids and not really enjoying my life because I felt so used.
So enter in “Work makes life sweet” and it’s made me think. As I was talking this over with my friend Christa, she pointed out that our culture does have this sense of entitlement that we should have time for ourselves and we deserve it. We have to work to make money, but the working conditions had better be ideal, I shouldn’t have to work too much and I better get paid a good wage. It’s all about ME!
And I guess that’s where I’ve been at, focusing on me and trying to get through this work so that I can have some coveted ‘time to myself’. But even if I did get some time, it just was never enough, and so I’d begrudge the work even more. But this saying is turning my perspective around. Maybe sweetness can be found IN the work, not necessarily when it’s done. Granted, there is a great feeling when you can see a task accomplished, it’s a great sense of satisfaction, but how about enjoying the process?
Ecclesiastes 2:24&25 says …
“There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God, for apart from him who can eat or who can have enjoyment?”
So there you have it, there is nothing better than actually enjoying your WORK, and realizing that work is actually from God. Wow! I think I have myself a new perspective. I’m giving it a try, and finding that in my work, there are many things I can be thankful for. For beautiful healthy children to cook for and clean for and do their laundry, for a house that keeps us sheltered. And all this housework is great excercise!
Yes, I think that work can make life sweet.