Work willingly at whatever you do

Published 1:43 pm Wednesday, August 30, 2023

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I didn’t know what to buy my granddaughter Caroline for her fifth birthday.

“She always wants new art supplies,” her mother Monique said.

Shopping was fun, especially since the Back-to-School items – markers and paint of all types – were front and center at every store. Monique was right. Caroline lingered over the supplies which weighed down her birthday bag and tossed aside the clothes I had added.

Caroline takes art as seriously as her age allows, and I’m often the recipient of her creativity. She spilled water on her latest sketch of the Grinch, so we titled it “The Grinch in the Rain.” I’m enjoying this season of watching Caroline turn blank paper and color into art.

It’s not the supplies that matter, it’s the person using them.

Take a cake, for example. I can start with the same ingredients as my friend Cindy, but our finished products will look – and taste – totally different. And if you’ve ever had the delicious masterpiece our family calls “Cindy Cake” you’ll agree.

My son-in-law Frank smooths a plank of cypress into charcuterie boards and roux spoons. My cousin Coy sits at the same piano I learned from, yet the pieces he plays are far better than mine. My daughter Monique will use my phone to take a picture from an angle I never thought of, and it looks like a portrait.

It’s never about the materials or the instruments, it’s all about the talent of the one using them.

What about the gift of time? My dad turns a day into opportunities to encourage others through meetings, phone calls, and text messages. It challenges me to do the same.

Although our talents and ministries vary, Paul’s instructions in Colossians 3:23 apply to all, “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.”


Ronny Michel can be reached at