#28 IN MY SERIES OF POSTINGS DEDICATED TO SUMMARIZING A WONDERFUL BOOK ENTITLED “THE DUDE’S GUIDE TO MARRIAGE: TEN SKILLS EVERY HUSBAND MUST DEVELOP TO LOVE HIS WIFE WELL” BY DARRIN & AMIE PATRICK.
A Brief History Of Work
Work did not begin as a separate sphere of life. According to anthropologists, it was essential for the survival of the hunter-gatherers. They didn’t recognize the search for food as work. It was an urgent, daily need. It was about making it through the day rather than accruing some future benefit. As agricultural methods were discovered, civilizations developed, and so did the awareness of work as work. The first farmers sowed and tilled, knowing they would reap a crop in the future. As the production and storage of food advanced, civilizations became more sophisticated, leading to the rise of skilled specialists. With this new skilled labor, the notions of a job arose as these laborers were able to opt out of the all-consuming task of food production. They traded their skills for the chance to live off the surplus of others’ work. The growing complexity and efficiency of food production promoted the increase of specialists, who were disconnected from the anxiety of the agricultural process. Abundance made it possible not to work every day. It made is possible to look forward to a relaxing weekend.
You would think in this evolution of work that a husband would rejoice in his job for the fact alone that he can rest from it. But many men don’t rest will because they don’t work that hard. They live for the weekend (working to rest well) instead of working from the weekend (resting to work well). They fail to find joy in the new work order that enables humans to work hard and live off the hard work of others.
A Theology Of Providing
What keeps husbands from getting joy from working hard and providing well? Although we could debate the new work order and its effects on men, we need to talk about the original work order to figure out why husbands are struggling with provision.
The Bible tells us that work was part of God’s good plan for creation from the beginning. There was a point when Murphy’s Law did not wreak havoc on our work. It was an essential aspect of how Adam and Eve, the first humans, would participate in God’s creation. Twice, the creation account in Genesis tells us that God created the garden of Eden and then placed the man there to “work and keep it” (2:8, 15).
Early on, God had a specific calling for mankind:
“Got blessed them. And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thang that moves on the earth'”Genesis 1:28 NIV
The command was given to Adam and his wife, Eve. God commanded both to exercise dominion over the earth. That is, they were to exercise righteous rule over God’s creation with God’s authority. Women as well as men share in this authority and responsibility.
I’ll continue from here in my next article.
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