Toil synonyms: exertion, effort, sweat.
What does “Our common life depends upon each other’s toil.” mean?
It is a quote that comes from the Book of Common Prayer and in a more expanded format says:
“O God, your unfailing providence sustains the world we live in and the life we live:
Watch over those both night and day, who work while others sleep,
and grant that we may never forget
that our common life depends upon each other’s toil;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. “
I read this a few months ago and it forced me to reflect on how our lives are intertwined intentionally by God.
Much of what we depend upon in our lives is unseen and unheralded, including God’s work in our lives.
After all, God designed us to be dependent on one another:
Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him” (Genesis 2:18 ESV).
And Ecclesiastes 4: 9-10 says:
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!
It is even addressed in the New Testament:
“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (Hebrews 10: 24-25).
A different perspective on Labor Day.
THIS PRAYER, AND THE ABOVE SCRIPTURES, FORCED ME TO ASK MYSELF SOME UNCOMFORTABLE QUESTIONS.
Do other people’s toil make my life better?
How many are unseen by me? Not because they are hiding, but because I choose not to look.
Do I truly appreciate the work of others, or do I take it for granted?
If, by now, you don’t have a different perspective on this holiday, please read about the:
Midnight Gardeners of Mumbai
This article is short and poignant and worth a few minutes of your time.
Midnight Gardeners of Mumbai focuses on two men who take care of the flowers at the municipal gardens. They toil after midnight. The ‘day’ people who enjoy the beauty of the gardens don’t see these men of the night, literally or figuratively. Yet, God sees them, for they are as valuable to our Father as anyone else.
Read this article. It is very short and I assure you it will touch your heart. It did mine. Honestly, it convicted my heart.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comment section below. And have a blessed Labor Day! Oh, and if you want to read something more that relates to Labor Day (LOL), you can check out a previous post titled: ‘Success God’s Way.’
such a great reminder and prayer Patrice. Thank you for posting it.
Thanks Marilyn. Hope you had a great Labor Day.