And so for what purpose am I here on Earth? I think, and I’m sure that most of my faithful Christ followers can answer that question, and rightly so. But I for one can answer, having come to realize, that I’m not here to labor purely for the provision of my own livelihood, for the fattening up of a financial portfolio, even while I may be still laboring at my temporal ambition/vocation/job. I’m aware of such business opportunities that offer just that, the “chance of a lifetime”, to live the “American dream,” to vacation exotically, etc. But consider the one as I have come to realize, initiated by the foremost CEO of all time: Jesus. He recruits His associates, calling them even in their temporal occupation to consider something far greater, with an opportunity to build a greater “portfolio”, for all eternity…
18 One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. 19 Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” 20 And they left their nets at once and followed him.
21 A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too. 22 They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind.
(Matthew 4:18-22, NLT)
And He gives His associates further instruction in proclaiming the “business”, in recruiting others (see 2 Timothy 2:1-3 and Acts 1:7-9), around the world, to join His team, and His promise of His continued presence…
18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations [peoples], baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
(Matthew 28:18-20, NLT)
He also encourages when all doesn’t seem to go as His associates would like it to, or think it should. Hence, they’re not to lose hope in their working in His “business”…
|Drawing by Miriam Parrish|
25 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
28 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, 29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?
31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
(Matthew 6:25-34, NLT)
In realizing the greater opportunity, one's temporal occupation can be considered as a "tentmaking"skill. The apostle Paul worked as such to support himself (see Acts 18:3), as the Life Application Study Bible notes, "As a tentmaker, Paul was able to go wherever God led him, carrying his livelihood with him."
"In general, [tentmaking] refers to the activities of any Christian who, while dedicating him or herself to the ministry of the Gospel, receives little or no pay [in working in the King's business], but performs other ('tentmaking') jobs to provide support," Tentmaking, Wikipedia.
"Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don't worry about missing out. You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met," (from Matthew 6:30-33, The Message).