For several months, I have read a chapter of Proverbs daily. I have read Proverbs countless times over the years. But it has come alive for me in fresh and new ways recently.
One proverb I have meditated a great deal on is Proverbs 16:3…
Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.
Proverbs are not guaranteed promises. They are practical wisdom for a godly and peaceful life. It may not be wise to read them as a principle and promise. It is more like a cause-and-effect. There is a choice and a consequence. You make specific life decisions. And there are typical results you can expect.
But this proverb is more than a generality about life. Proverbs 16:3 is clearly about how the Lord gets involved in our work.
The Decision You Should Make
This proverb begins with a focus on your “work” – your labor, activities, and practices. It is not necessarily about ministry or church work. It is your work. Your work includes both responsibilities and opportunities. You put certain things into your work. And you expect certain things out of your work.
There is no command to work here. Work is assumed. The instruction is about how you do your work: “Commit your work to the Lord.” The word “commit” means to roll onto or off of. There are inevitable burdens work brings. But you are not to carry the load on your own. You are to roll the burdens of your work on to the Lord.
How do you commit your works to the Lord?
- Trust the Lord with your work (Proverbs 3:5-6). Remember that the Lord is your true source. Your work is the means by which the Lord provides for you.
- Submit your work to the Lord. Your work should not be about your work. Work for the Lord as you do your work (Colossians 3:23).
- Pray to the Lord about your work (Philippians 4:6-7). Pray that God would guide, strengthen, protect, bless, and smile on your work.
The Result You Can Expect
What can you expect to happen if you commit your work to the Lord? “Your plans will be established.”
The vanity of life is that you can commit yourself to your work and it fails. Your work may not return the investment you have made in it. Or the results and rewards of your work do not last. But if you commit your work to the Lord, your plans will be established. The Lord alone can bless your work to be steadfast, secure, and successful.
The proverb counsels you to commit your work to the Lord. But it does not assure your work will be established. The assurance is that your plans will be established. Here is clear proof this is the Lord’s doing! Only the Lord can establish your work. Moreover, only the Lord can establish the plans, aims, and goals that motivate your work.
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. – Psalm 37:4
What work responsibilities or opportunities are you facing? Have you committed your work to the Lord? Do you trust him to establish your plans?