It's kind of funny and ironic, but what's the one thing most people don't do on Labor Day? You guessed it-work. The day was set aside as a national holiday, of course, not to honor the concept of work, but to honor the labor movement in America. Probably most Americans today think of themselves as "working people" and resonate with the stories of the struggle for workplace safety and elimination of child labor.
But you are almost surely an employer too. Even if you don't own your own company, you hire people all the time-babysitters, home-repair contractors, and servicepeople. As a nation, we boo and hiss at the stories of the robber barons of the 19th century, but we should all ponder how we treat people who are lower on the economic ladder than we are.
One of the signs of spiritual decay in Old Testament Israel was economic oppression. The rich took advantage of the poor, all the while still performing religious rituals and ceremonies. God would have none of it: "On the day of your fasting, you do as you please and exploit all your workers" (Isaiah 58:3).
This Labor Day, as you enjoy your long weekend, give some thought to how you treat, and tip, the college kids who are your waitstaff, car valets, and pizza deliverers. The clerks who wait on you have little or no power, but the way you treat them can make them feel important and human. God will smile.