“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,”
“And whatever you do, do [work at] it heartily”
God wants the employee (“bondslave”) to serve diligently, not carelessly. He does not want us to help our employer with displeasure, no matter the nature of our employment.
“Heartily” means out of the soul. We do whatever we do with a genuine conviction originating from our souls. This labor comes from the essential character that comes from within. We do not serve out of making an impression on others. Our work then is not mechanical or perfunctory.
We will exert power from the soul at our job or place of employment. We may dislike our job, but God wants us to consider it an opportunity to serve him enthusiastically.
The Greek uses two different words for “do” in this verse. The first means are dong. The second word is an advance on the first meaning of work or labor. There is double stress in this verse upon diligence:
1) “heartily” or out of the soul and
2) “do” with effort. God expects us to put in a whole-hearted day’s work at our employment.
God wants us to discharge our job with enthusiasm.
Ultimately we honor God when we faithfully do our job. If we do not work with enthusiasm, then we are not in God’s will. God wants us to do everything at work with a sense of spirit. No job is dreary with this perspective. What a difference from trying to get by with as little effort as possible.
Whatever job to which God calls us, He wants us to serve Him with it. Our work may subsist as menial; we may dislike our job. Still, God wants us to serve Him heartily in that job. He wants us to throw ourselves into our work.
Serving the Lord at our job gives dignity to what we do. We may sweep floors, wash dishes, change diapers, or empty the trash. We may work at an office where everyone cuts corners and takes long coffee breaks, but we break that standard. The Christian does not operate on the same standards as the herd. Our boss is in heaven. Therefore, we throw our hearts into our work.
All work is sacred before the Lord. Nothing is unimportant that we do when we serve him.