Stand Alone Sermon
For many today, Labor Day signals the end of a summer break, and the beginning of a time where we wrap up our summer activities, prepare to get back to school, start up more activities and responsibilities that will take our focus for the rest of the year and beyond. For the church, it means the beginning of a new year of ministry, of fall events, of new classes and bible studies. There is much to do after summer break, but God doesn’t want us to simply move from one activity to another, passively floating through life. No, God has something so much bigger for us! As we learn today from Ephesians 2:8-10, God has saved His people, those who believe in Christ, from the terrible consequences of their sins, and has now made us new in Christ with a plan: To do the good works He has prepared for us! But what are these good works? Does God want each of us to travel the world, doing mighty works in His name? Does He expect each of us to sell all we have and give it to the poor? Are we all called to the same things? No, God has something so much more incredible in store for us! God has prepared good works for each of us individually in our daily lives, and these good works are most often the very things we know we need to do to simply live in this world: things like raising our families, working at our jobs, doing our chores, helping out neighbors… But we aren’t to do these things as the world does. We are to do these things for God and as worship to Him! That is what it means to do the good works prepared by God. It’s a daily, intentional focus on working for the Lord even in the mundane moments of our lives. When we understand this and begin to live this way, we’ll see that no moment of our lives are a waste, no matter how frustrating or boring they might seem, because they are done for the glory of our God, the one who saved us, loves us, and gives us true joy in living for Him!