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Who Do You Represent?

Not too long ago I wrote a piece on my dad, who has inspired me in tons of ways. Well, tonight I went to work and there was a new guy. As I introduced myself, he asked what my last name was and immediately connected that he had worked with my dad for about eight years before he (semi)retired. It was a cool connection and fun to hear about my dad in his work life, which I seldom got to experience as a kid.

But as we worked, something struck me: I found myself very aware of this new guy's proximity to me, and how hard I was working when I was near him. I wanted him to think I was a good worker because he knew my dad, and my dad's reputation would inevitably transfer to me. Not that I am not a hard worker when no one is looking, but I was trying extra hard to appear engaged and focused on my tasks when this guy was around. And I don't feel like this was a bad thing to experience, honestly, but it got me thinking...who is it that you work for? Whose reputation do you carry on as you live?  Work, play, et cetera? Overall, who do you represent?

Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people (Colossians 3:23)
If you look up that verse in its context, Paul is charging slaves to obey their masters in the same way that they would the Lord. Can you imagine a life like that? Most of us struggle to work hard when we're getting paid handsomely with vacation and sick leave. Consider how difficult it would be if we had no choice in the matter and got nothing but a place to live and some meager food?

But the charge is still there -- work as though you are working for God. And in this translation, it goes beyond work to live like you are living for God. In everything. All of you. It's like Jesus said when asked what the greatest commandment was:

He answered, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" (Luke 10:27)
Consider who you represent and whose reputation you carry. It is God's, and though the church often struggles with the right way to do this, I have a feeling that all-encompassing love is the best place to start.