Let's roll up our sleeves and get to work.
“Persons created in the image of God and called to prolong the work of creation by subduing the Earth …” –The Catechism of the Catholic Church §2427
God can do anything without us, but He has chosen to ask for our help. He wants us to participate in the work of His Creation.
Saints have shown us the way: they have never been idle. If prayer is the source of their work, it doesn’t replace it. They’ve served the Kingdom of God with vigor.
Let us admire the Virgin Mary after the Annunciation: setting off to help her cousin Elizabeth without wasting any time. Saints are not prone to daydreaming — if their hearts are in Heaven, their feet are planted firmly on the ground. Even the most contemplative among them are exceptionally practical, their efficiency heightened by their desire to serve the will of God.
It would be a mistake to oppose Martha to Mary (Lk. 10:38-42).Choosing “what is better” doesn’t mean letting “Marthas” do all the work, but working with a perspective of “what is better.” Work doesn’t conflict with contemplation: it stems from it.
To build or to endure: it is up to us!
Faced with challenges of the modern world, we can spend our time lamenting what used to be, imagining what can be, and speaking critically of others. The Kingdom is not in need of critics inspecting the final work, but of men and women who are not afraid to act.
Taking an action is always a risk; making a mistake or incurring criticism and reproach of others is difficult. Yet, to be “the salt of the earth,” we must first be willing to get our hands dirty. It’s easy to keep them clean when they’re stuck in our pockets! It’s different when we’ve resolve to face the reality, to actually serve our brothers and sisters, to take initiatives. Will we dare to abandon the beaten path to find new solutions and open new doors? Will we stand up to hardship, mediocrity, ugliness, misery, all forms of violence, and cease viewing them as inevitable?
Our children must see us taking risks. They need our encouragement to get involved “to permeate social, political, and economic realities with the demands of Christian doctrine and life” (Catechism of the Catholic Church § 899).
Work is not adverse to rest
The kingdom of God won’t draw nearer because of what we do alone: it is God who brings it nearer, together with us. We are like tools in his hands. The more we obey Him the more efficient we are.God is not asking us to do as much as possible.He doesn’t expect us to accomplish extraordinary exploits.He is simply asking us to do what He has entrusted to us, to accomplish the tasks we’ve been given in the time attributed to us.
This presupposes that we stay “connected” to Him through prayer. If we lose ourselves in work, without taking time to pray, we may achieve something great, but how fruitful will we actually be? It goes both ways.