Yesterday I talked about how the Kingdom of God shapes the way we view our work. Viewing our work through the lens of the KoG changes things. We quit jobs. We stay in jobs. We speak up. We quiet down.
Today I want to talk about how work and money relate to one another, and why that matters to our souls.
First, a story.
I’ve spent a good part of my young adult life working hard for little pay. I worked in college ministry. I worked as a stay-at-home-mom. I worked as a blogger. Some of these jobs I did for free, others for somewhere around minimum wage. I would (and still do) often say that it’s not about the money. It’s about creating and caring and loving; the reward is the opportunity to share with others.
At the same time, I’ve become more and more convinced that people who work should be paid more. Artists. Fast food workers. Bloggers. Caregivers.
I love how, in some countries, men and women are paid to be home with their kids for the first year or two of the child’s life.
I love how some communities really value art and pay and celebrate their local artists well.
I love how women are beginning to create Etsy shops to sell the beautiful things they are making to others.
I love how bloggers and writers are beginning to rethink what it means to be a writer and thought leader, and asking for payment for their craft.
I recently finished a book called the Money Making Mom, by Crystal Paine (founder of www.moneysavingmom.com), which is about encouraging, empowering, and equipping women to find ways to make money doing what they’re good at. She helps women see how they can still be at home, still care for their families, while also making some money to get out of debt, put food on the table, and save for an upcoming project or expense.
Along with receiving to help our families, we’re also called to give generously to others. In her book, Crystal dedicates a whole chapter, plus parts of others to the idea that we have the joy and responsibility of giving generously to those around us. She shares some of the cool projects her family has been able to invest in, as well as stories of others women from all walks and seasons of life like single moms barely scraping by, but still reaching out and caring for orphans in their community.
So while payment doesn’t equate value of our jobs (I think the kingdom value is inherit in most jobs), payment helps families survive. It decreases marital and familial stress. It helps kids in school. Eventually (if paid enough and the person isn’t driven to work more and more for the unsatiable bigger and better monster), it frees up people’s time to be more invested in their families, their communities, and their churches. It helps people and families flourish, which affects all of our souls.