When I was growing up, I was able to witness the long hours my father worked in his job. My father was a lifelong salesman. In the earlier part of my life he sold insurance, actually beginning his career canvassing for buyers door to door. Later as he acquired a large base of clients, he would sell from a home office, but would spend Fridays collecting premiums that were due. Usually those were clients’ paydays. My mother, sister and I would ride along in the car, often spending a lot of time waiting for him to collect the money. My mother would entertain us as we waited on Dad.

Later in time, my father coupled his insurance business with real estate. He worked long and hard to provide a comfortable life for us. He had a strong work ethic that made him a top salesman in the company for which he was employed. I learned how to work hard from my father. I have maintained that work ethic throughout my life.

In my senior year of high school, I was privileged to work for Matt Perkins. Mr. Perkins was a multi-millionaire and founder of the restaurant chain named after him, Perkins. Mr. Perkins was a hands-on, old-school businessman. He was on site overseeing the start of the nation’s newest Perkins restaurant in Cincinnati when I got hired. I was fortunate to catch his eye. He called me to meet with him one night after hours to discuss a career in his company upon my graduation from high school. He wanted to put me into management. While flattered by his interest and offer, I declined and choose another direction for my life. However, my time observing his leadership made a huge impact.

My journey would lead me into the United States Air Force that included a four-year tour at Headquarters, Strategic Air Command. My service was highly blessed of God and I was honored to have served our nation. It was during my military years that I became a Christian; I was born again by the Holy Spirit, by grace through faith in my crucified, resurrected Savior, Jesus Christ. My spiritual birth led me to the study of Scripture where I learned a key spiritual principle. The spiritual principle was that I was to serve my Lord Jesus Christ and not men.

In Colossians 3:23-24, the Bible says, “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”

The Scripture clearly commands that our effort as Christians should be wholehearted, not half-hearted. We are expected to give 100%, 100% of the time! God’s people should be passionate about their work and committed to outstanding performance. Christians should have a great attitude because we are serving Jesus and seeking to please Him.

A great work ethic, coupled with a positive, cheerful attitude, will please every boss! This is terrific! However, it is THE BOSS (The Lord) who should motivate us to perform at the highest level. It is for His honor and glory that we utilize all our God-given gifts in the place where He has chosen. While we may receive temporal recognition from our employer and a weekly paycheck, the ultimate recognition will be in Heaven before the Throne of the Righteous Judge, Jesus Christ. I am looking forward to my inheritance that I will enjoy with Christ. Until then, I keep serving Christ with all my heart and bless Him with my effort.

It has been said if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life! It is genuinely a blessing to comprehend that God has created us with a purpose and a plan and a time. It is all in His hands. Discover your gifts; learn who you are; do what you were created to do. This is where you will find your purpose and live an exciting life of significance. It is never too late to be who you were created to be!

Have a great week and remember, God loves YOU!

Contact Jon at jtshonebarger@gmail.com.

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