Good morning ambassadors for Christ!  Working hard is a good thing.  We have lots of reasons for working diligently and putting our all into what we do professionally.  Hard work can, and often does, result in reward.  This reward can range from financial blessing to a sense of fulfillment; it can be spiritual or material in nature.  And if we are honest this morning, most of us would really like to be successful in our work, right?  But why?  What if God does raise you up to become successful in your industry or line of work? (He's already done this for many of you!)  What if your investment in the workplace yields a much greater power, influence, income or success by some other standard?

Jabez prayed that God would expand/enlarge his territory (I Chron. 4:10 ).  Whatever else that could have meant, it implies greater opportunity, impact, potential, and a wider range of general reward.  Nehemiah, in a bold request to the Lord, pleaded, "Lord, make your servant successful today..." (1:11)  King Solomon, in Psalm 72, asks the Lord to make him famous and bless Him mightily (vs. 1-2).  So, what if He actually does this for you?  What will you do with your windfall of "territory," "success," "fame," or other such application of His hand?  Will it have been a success that is simply for your benefit alone?  The Lord speaks to this be reminding us that, "You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures."  (James 4:3)

As you launch this brand new day, your workplace challenge is to ask the Lord to bless your work with unusual success and great reward.  And if or when He does, turn it back as praise to Him by using the details of that success to love, encourage, and support the things He loves and wants to move forward in the world today.  Check the motives of your heart to ensure that, like Solomon (for example), your true desire is to use your God-granted resources to "deliver the needy when he cries for help" or "have compassion on the poor and needy."  Solomon also asked for fame so that he could make "His (God's) name endure forever" and make "His name increase as long as the sun shines!" (Psalm 72:16,17)   Is it any wonder that the Lord blessed Solomon so abundantly?  And may God also bless you similarly this morning.  Through your work, may He provide the resources necessary to provide for your needs and lift up all the things that are most important to Him.  Have a very successful day and make it count for His Glory!