Joseph Scheumann has a post on “Five Encouragements for Everyday Work” discussing the value and purpose of our work. You’re not a second-class citizen in God’s eyes if you’re not in the ministry. No matter what you do for a living (assuming it’s legal and moral), your work is important. We’re all creating value for our societies, our families, and ourselves; and God is working through even the most obscure job to serve people.
Scheumann quotes Gene Veith:
The ability to read God’s word is an inexpressibly precious blessing, but reading is an ability that did not spring fully formed in our young minds, it required the vocation of teachers. God protects us through the cop on the beat and the whole panoply of the legal system. He gives us beauty and meaning through artists. He lets us travel through the ministry of auto workers, mechanics, road crews, and airline employees. He keeps us clean through the work of garbage collectors, plumbers, sanitation workers, and sometimes undocumented aliens who clean our hotel rooms. He brings people to salvation through pastors and through anyone else who proclaims the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the lost. The fast-food worker, the inverter; the clerical assistant, the scientist; the accountant, the musician — they all have high callings, used by God to bless and serve His people and His creation. (God at Work: Your Christian Vocation in All of Life, 14–15)
I’m always reminded of the beauty and dignity of work when I catch an episode of Undercover Boss. It doesn’t matter how low on the pay scale or how seemingly mundane the job is, when I see a man joyfully do his work with excellence, out of a desire to create something that will serve the customers to the best of his ability, there is a certain glory and awe that surrounds this, and I want to be just like him.