Author: Ron Graham


Overwork: It's Not Worth It
—Too much of a good thing

To the Christian, work is honourable and necessary. All Christians should seek to be busy doing something good, whether paid money for it or not. But with the best intentions, one can fall into the trap of overwork. It is work, but not overwork, that God requires of the Christian.

Even when overwork is done for godly reasons rather than worldly, it is still destructive in many ways. That is why Jethro said to Moses, when he saw Moses overworking in God's service, "What you are doing is not good" (Exodus 18:13-24).

1 It Wrecks Your Family

Parents who are overworking cannot bring up their children "in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" nor be "workers at home" (Ephesians 6:4, Titus 2:4-5). A home where people are nurtured in love and godliness, is too precious to lose chasing money and career.

2 It Ruins Your Health

Our physical bodies belong to God as much as our souls. Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit, and our bodies were bought with the precious blood of Jesus. Our bodies are devoted to the glory of God as instruments of service to him, not for our own wishes (1Corinthians 6:19-20). Anything that is an abuse and contrary to the wellbeing of our bodies is wrong. Overwork weakens and injures our bodies. Therefore overwork is not good.

3 It Smothers Your Ministry

Each Christian has received a special gift and must be a good steward of that grace by making a ministry of it (1Peter 4:10). Overwork steals time and energy from this service, and this is true even when the overwork is in that very service!

4 It Contradicts Your Confession

One becomes a Christian through receiving and obeying the word of Christ in faith. This includes a confession of Christ and ongoing devotion to him —such devotion as was shown by the first Christians Acts 2:41-42, 46). You cannot overwork and be daily devoted to the One you confess as Lord. Work becomes your lord and master, and Christ no longer is.

5 It Endangers Your Soul

Overworkers professing to be Christians, should read Christ's warning in Mark 8:34-37.