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Disclaimer: The chaplain gave his full permission for the writing of this post (I think).
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Those who know the chaplain know him to be cautious and as described by his daughter in law “usually poised.”
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Well, after a full day of work we jumped into the truck and took off to a little fishing hole not too far away from the homestead.  The weather was perfect…all systems were go for a late afternoon fishing excursion. On these after work outings the chaplain relaxes as he casts his line and I enjoy the quiet pre-dusk hours with a good book.
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On this most recent excursion, as the chaplain was doing a double check on the trolling motor I suddenly saw arms flailing, legs flying and water splashing! I heard myself laughing hysterically as the chaplain yelled: “Oh! Oh! Oooohhhh! I fell in! I fell in! I can’t believe I fell in!”

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Oh, I wish I had the presence of mind to capture the moment with video.
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The moment was too funny not to share it with others.  So I did…
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…and I am.
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Plan to shop for some water shoes

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May also add a change of clothes to keep in the boat

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Time for a new wallet...and cell phone

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The cool thing is the chaplain laughed too—so much so that he could hardly get back into the boat. I think we’ll be laughing about this one for a long time. Oh, but it didn’t keep him from fishing!

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We can go overboard with work and life, can’t we? The chaplain has realized he needs to make time to relax and do something fun. Work hard and play hard, laugh at yourself—and once in awhile go overboard!
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©Brenda Pace, 2012

Here in Tennessee we are enjoying the perfect weather for an ideal Labor Day. The chaplain is out playing Frisbee golf with the boys and I am easing into the day here at home. I’ve been thinking about Labor Day and what it means to me. I don’t have a formal job where I punch a clock or get a regular paycheck, but I certainly do ‘work.’
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I come from a family characterized by diligence. My dad grew up the hard way. He dropped out of school at a young age in order to work in the cotton mills of North Carolina. He worked hard to pull himself out of that life by joining the Army and then used his GI Bill to be the only person in his family to attend college. He eventually earned a PhD and was tenacious in his effort to become a successful college professor.  He enjoyed his labor. At 86 he continues to work hard as he cares for my mother and keeps a careful routine of home management, and still finds time to study and write every day. My mother worked off and on as a secretary during my growing up years and I recall her enjoying her employment.
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Productive Members of Society

My husband is also a man who displays diligence. He is someone who is fully present in his work and goes above and beyond what is required. He enjoys being productive and finds his work both meaningful and purposeful. He’s passed this on to our sons, as they have become “productive members of society.” (Whew! she said with gratitude!) This term has been a buzz phrase in our family as we communicated a desire to see these young men find satisfaction in a chosen vocation. I’m proud of the way our boys and their wives work hard to provide for their families.
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Practical Guidance

Yesterday I heard an excellent sermon on this topic. I never thought about how much scripture has to say about work. But, of course God’s Word has practical guidance for daily living! Here are some samples to contemplate on this Labor Day:
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A man can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in his work. This too, I see, is from the hand of God. Ecclesiastes 2:24 NIV
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I realized that it is good and proper for a man to eat and drink, and to find satisfaction in his toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given him—for this is his lot. Moreover, when God gives any man wealth and possessions, and enables him to enjoy them, to accept his lot and be happy in his work—this is a gift of God. Ecclesiastes 5:18-19 NIV
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For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” 2 Thessalonians 3:10 NIV
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Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. 1 Peter 4:10 NIV

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He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. Ephesians 4:28 NIV

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Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops; Proverbs 3:9 NIV

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Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Colossians 4:23-24 NIV

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Your Work Matters to God
In the book Your Work Matters to God, authors William Hendricks and Douglas Sherman offer five important purposes for work:
Through work we serve people.
Through work we meet our own needs.
Through work we meet our family’s needs.
Through work we earn money to give to others.
Through work we love God.
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Christian speaker Chip Ingram has this to say about work,  “A job is what I do to earn a living. A career is what I build to create a life. A vocation is what God calls me to do to fulfill His highest purposes in me and through me for His glory and my joy.”
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The ?
As stated earlier I currently do not have a job where I punch a clock or receive a regular wage, but I certainly find myself doing ‘work.’  I truly enjoy the work in which I’m involved (with the exception of the need to clean my house today!).  Whatever I consider my “work”, the important question to ask is: Am I glorifying God and serving people through it? I’m thinking even today my family would be blessed to have some clean clothes ready for tomorrow and a good meal to officially say farewell to a full summer. Off to work I go…
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Happy Labor Day!
©Brenda Pace, 2010