These days, whenever someone speaks about working for the Lord, everyone thinks of a great work, something he does in a special way in a special time set apart for this, etc. The phrase “working for the Lord” has been so spoiled from what the Bible says about it. Paul says in Phil. 1:22
But if I am to live in the flesh, if this to me is fruit for my work, then I do not know what will I chose.
Here we see that Paul’s work was actually his living. The same with the Lord Jesus: He lived according to the Father’s will, fulfilling the Father’s plan, and He expressed God in His living at all times. It’s not like at one point He took a break, took a short nap/a vacation, and then He returned – full-time, non-stop, Christ lived and expressed God. Paul also said in Phil. 1:12
Now I want you to know, brothers, that the things concerning me have turned out rather to the advancement of the gospel.
Even when he was in prison, though he was very limited in what he could “preach” or do outwardly, Paul’s living and being was a factor for the advancement of the gospel. It was not about what he did in an outward way, or what he accomplished humanly – it was his practical life and living with the Lord that was his work. In Phil. 1:20 he said
According to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I will be put to ashame, but with all boldness, as always, even now Christ will be magnified in my body, whether through life or through death.
And even more: when Paul went to the city of Thessalonians, he didn’t just “preach the gospel“, or “evangelize” – we see in the epistle he wrote back to them that he and the other apostles had a certain kind of living before the Thessalonians, a certain living and magnifying of Christ – and he was reminding them of that! Paul didn’t remind them of his works of power, miraculous healings and other supernatural things that occurred through him(though these may have happened), but he wore in 1 Thes. 2:1
For you yourselves know, brothers, our entrance toward you, that it has not been in vain.
This should be our normal Christian experience, our Christian life and living – magnifying Christ in our body whether we’re limited and restricted, or we live at large and we’re not persecuted by the others. Our work, which is our living, is to enjoy Christ every day and then minister Him into the believers / the ones around us. What do we give others when we meet them? We can only minister into them what has been constituted into our being, what we enjoyed and experienced personally. When we enjoy Christ by spending time with Him, eating Him and drinking Him, fellowshipping with Him, being in the life-practices, opening our being to be infused with Him, turning our heart to the Lord, etc – we will spontaneously experience Him and magnify Him! Our living will be our preaching of the gospel, and our work will be what we are & live every day in our normal day-to-day life!
May the Lord recover us to be normal Christians, normal Christ-enjoying and Christ-magnifying believers. Believers who, just like Paul, lived and expressed Christ, and magnified Him in everything.