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The Tension of “Trusting” and “Hustling”

Series: The Word Before Work Foundations
Devotional: 17 of 21
Published: May 2, 2018

You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today. (Deuteronomy 8:17-18)

“Hustle” has to be one of the most popular mantras in work culture today. Entrepreneurs are told that they have to “hustle” to make their businesses succeed. Everyone seems to be working on a “side-hustle” outside of their 9-to-5 job. 

But what does God’s Word have to say about hustle? 

On the one hand, Scripture clearly celebrates hard work. In Colossians 1, Paul himself claims to “strenuously contend with all the energy” in his work. Then, a few verses later, he commands us to do the same saying, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart” (Colossians 3:23).

Given the many ways our work matters for eternity as we saw in Days 8-14 of this series, we should “hustle” and work hard. But, in all of our hustle, we must also wrestle with the biblical truth that it is God alone—not us or our hustle—that produces results in our work. Today’s passage and many others make this crystal clear.

As Christ-followers, we are called to embrace the tension between trusting and hustling, on the one hand working “with all our hearts,” while on the other hand leaving the results of our hard work in God’s hands.

How do we know if we are managing the tension between trust and hustle well? By whether or not we are able to rest from our work. It is that subject that we will turn to tomorrow.

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