In the end, it is the Spirit who makes us holy and it is he who changes otherwise ordinary, seemingly mundane things into spiritual matters. After all, the earth is the Lord’s and the fulness thereof. It is strange and heretical teaching that says do not touch, do not taste, do not handle. That sort of ascetism is of no value. What transforms ordinary matters into spiritual matters, mundane works into spiritual works, is the Spirit at work within us causing us to glorify God and enjoy him in everyday things.
What makes a work and good work? What makes an ordinary task into a spiritual task? What turns an ordinary, mundane thing into a God-honouring, Christ glorifying thing?
After all, we are created to glorify God and enjoy him forever. We are created by God to walk in the good works he has prepared for us to do. But what, exactly, makes any work one of the good ones he has prepared for us? What makes anything we do glorifying to God?
This is one of those questions that Christians have a habit of tying themselves in knots over. It is one of those matters that really give Christians a reputation for sucking the joy out of anything. Many simply can’t enjoy a thing, they must be sure it is a good and spiritual thing first. In handwringing about that, they are never free to enjoy God’s creation and the fullness thereof because they are too busy agonising over whether they are enjoying it rightly, if they should even enjoy it at all and, if they do enjoy it rightly, whether they have done so too much.
But I think there is a simple answer to the question. An answer that frees us from all the handwringing and agonising over everything. What makes any old work a good work? What makes an ordinary task and spiritual task? The answer, simply, is the Holy Spirit and our union with Christ.
What changes enjoying a nice meal into a “good work” and a spiritual activity? The Spirit at work within us causing us to give thanks to God for it. What turns ordinary rest into a spiritual activity? When we give thanks to God to allowing us to rest. What turns your work into a spiritual activity?