Why Your Work Matters – by Hugh Whelchel
In his book Redeeming Law, Michael P. Schutt recalls his experience as a young Christian lawyer trying to understand how to integrate his faith and work. He writes,
We wanted to be more than Christians muddling through the law. We wanted to be Christian lawyers, our faith integrated with our calling. We found little guidance in the classroom, from our texts, or from practicing lawyers and professors. Or from our pastors and priests.
Your experience might be similar. How does law fit into God’s plan for the world? How does being a lawyer bring glory to God? Does your work in the legal profession even matter to him?
It does. The Reformers taught that all labor, including law, is noble if it is accepted as a calling and performed “as unto the Lord.”
As Christians, we are called to work toward the transformation of all culture, bringing all of it under the lordship of Christ. As Albert Wolters writes in Creation Regained,
What was formed in creation has been historically deformed by sin and must be reformed in Christ.
Since the law is a bedrock foundation of culture, your work as a Christian in the legal field is incredibly important. It might seem insignificant sometimes, but by answering the call to fulfill your role in God’s redemptive drama, you can find meaning in even the most mundane activities.
The kingdom of God bears on every dimension of life, and agents of the kingdom serve as salt and light wherever the Holy Spirit leads them. As we Christians live out our worldview in public life, we help reverse the erosion of truth in the world in a number of different ways.
In his book Visions of Vocation, Steve Garber refers to lawyers as “incarnations of justice.” You stand for what is true, right, and just in a world dominated by relativism and disbelieving of absolute truth.
In the beginning, God created the world ex nihilo, from nothing. He brought order out of chaos. We are made in his image, and as such we are creators, too. Law, whether it is tax law, civil justice, or corporate contracts, can appear chaotic and confusing to those outside the legal profession. You bring order to this chaos through your work as a lawyer.
You are on a mission from God, one that goes beyond evangelizing in far off places or teaching a Sunday school class. These are important, but we also need Christians in the courtroom, the corporate board room, tax offices, and all the other places lawyers have the opportunity to let their work be a witness for the transforming, redemptive power of Christ.
CLS is collaborating with the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics to provide first-class devotionals for CLS members.
Hugh Whelchel is Executive Director of the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics and author of How Then Should We Work? Rediscovering the Biblical Doctrine of Work. Hugh has a Master of Arts in Religion and brings over thirty years of diverse business experience to his leadership at IFWE.
The Institute for Faith, Work & Economics™ (IFWE) is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) Christian research organization committed to promoting biblical and economic principles that help individuals find fulfillment in their work and contribute to a free and flourishing society.