Nehemiah 8: 9-10

“Go home and prepare a fest, holiday food and drink and share it with those who don’t have anything. This day is holy to God. Don’t feel bad. The joy of the Lord is your strength”.

Our work that we do should not be separated from the church for God has called it all holy. Our work should be for God.

Nehemiah was a builder, a construction worker and Ezra was a scholar or a pastor, preacher, doing what we call God’s work. Even though they had two different types of work they worked together to rebuild Jerusalem.

When I was listening to Focus on the Family and they were interviewing Donna Partow who has written a book titled ‘Making Money from Home’. 

One thing that caught my interest was that many people have the mentality ‘God give me my daily bread’. Yet the Lord’s Prayer says ‘God give us our daily bread.’ I always thought that tithing 10% and some of offerings was enough. I did have the thought of ‘give me my daily bread’.  I needed to get my thoughts right and lined up with God’s ‘Give us our daily bread’.

The speaker went on to say that we in business need to ask God how we can use our gifts and imagination in our businesses to bless others. 

 I realized that I give mugs as gifts and donate from my husbands pay, and as a result we have been blessed. Now the question is ‘how do I use my gifts and talents to benefit others’. Did I have that mentality?

I was driving into town and as usual I was rushing. My time line not God’s. I also did not have the peace and the joy of God to be my strength. We live in a materialized rushing society. As a Christian I need to put God first, slow down and stay in the joy of the Lord. I know when I do that everything falls into place and works out. My new model is that I needed to slow down and take time to enjoy my life.

So how would slowing down befit others? When I am rushing I am doing what has to be done. In my pottery I make functional items, and they do sell and it benefits others. When I slow down I have peace and enjoy making more than mugs. I enjoy creating vases and animals. When I am creating I feel fulfilled and the joy of the Lord shows in me. Also I am more generous.

Sometimes I get a call asking if I would donate a specific amount of soup bowls for a fund raiser called ‘Soups On’ for the local food banks.  Tickets are sold and on a certain day the ticket owners come and pick out a hand made bowl which is filled with soup for lunch. They then take the bowl home. If I am stressed out and feel under pressure I usually only donate a few bowls, maybe half of what they are asking. When I don’t feel under pressure I can make more pottery and have more bowls to donate. 


Not only do I need to ask God how I can use my gifts for him, for my work is not separate from God’s work, but I need to do it in the Joy of The Lord!

Comments (9)

On August 8, 2011 at 9:26 AM , BonJeanCreations said...

Thank you. This is a good lesson for me.

On August 8, 2011 at 10:00 AM , monika said...

What a wonderful insight..thank you for sharing♥

On August 8, 2011 at 10:56 AM , Stephen Edward Graphics said...

Thanks for including my Silly Monster Wall Decals!

On August 8, 2011 at 12:55 PM , MYSAVIOR said...

Thank you for sharing this. We all need these reminders to keep us aligned with God.


On August 8, 2011 at 1:44 PM , Sue Runyon said...

Thanks so much, Joyce. Nehemiah is one of my favorite books.

On August 8, 2011 at 7:31 PM , Sheila said...

This is a great reminder about sharing our gifts and blessings. Thank you for writing it.

On August 9, 2011 at 11:48 AM , Butler Pottery said...

Thank you for all you comments. It a pleasure doing these devotions.

On August 9, 2011 at 12:43 PM , krafterskorner said...

Yes, the joy of the Lord is my strength!

On August 14, 2011 at 7:48 PM , baublesabode said...

I didn't know there was a CAST Team until I had a member show me!! Thanks- It's nice to know so many fellow artists believe that we live in a Christian Country. Graet Artists in the team!