“The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.” - 2 Thessalonians 3:10
Last weekend was Labor Day Weekend, and ninety-four million Americans are still not in the labor force.
Of course, there are many practical reasons for part of that number, retirement, genuine disability, jobs being held by illegals and people who have looked long and hard and just not been able to find a job and given up trying, to name a few.
I have sympathy for the injured, the infirm, the people who for one physical or mental reason or another are unable to hold down a job, and I believe that they should have assistance. I believe in charity, and I believe in helping a family that has lost its breadwinner and are struggling to keep the family together.
I believe in helping those with chronic illnesses and feel we can never do enough for the needs of those who have served our country in the military.
But when it comes to supporting lazy bums who have found a crack in the system, enabling them to draw a government check and who have no intention of working for a living, I draw the line.
I have no patience for able-bodied men who won't work simply because they have found a loophole in the system that they can exploit, nor do I have patience for deadbeat dads who father children and walk away, leaving society with the bill for supporting them.
I believe welfare recipients should be drug tested and regularly investigated to make sure public money is being spent in the way it's supposed to be.
No matter how much hand-wringing and posturing most politicians do about the invasion across our southern borders, no matter what excuses they make, if you'll notice, neither party ever really does anything meaningful about it.
That's because it's by design, people. The big money interests want cheap labor and loyal voters, and in the process they have soaked up the lower echelon jobs that were once the training ground for America's novice work force.
Admittedly, it's been a long time since I was a teenager, and times and social mores have changed, but cutting grass, raking leaves, day-working on farms and doing whatever odd jobs that came our way meant pocket money for the kids of my generation.
We came up in a society where work ethic was honed and drilled into young folks’ heads from the time they could walk. It was well understood that once you took your feet out from under your mother's table you were on your own. Nobody was going to give you anything, and the only way you would survive would be by the sweat of your brow.
My last couple of summer vacations were spent doing manual labor at a creosote plant, and two weeks after I finished high school I went to work in a capacitor factory and have worked steadily ever since. I did basically manual labor until I cut the apron strings in ‘58 and went out into the world with a guitar and a dream, but that's another story.
I've picked cotton, cropped tobacco, pulled peanuts, worked in the log woods and am no stranger to backbone jobs, and I consider it a blessing knowing what truly hard physical work is all about.
I wanted my son to know the same thing, and in his early teens put him to work cleaning out horse stalls in the barn.
It seems that under the current administration self-reliance, personal responsibility, work ethic and the other traits that made America into the nation it is, or was, (that's a subjective issue) have been traded in for dependence on the government, and a “blame all your problems on some outside force, the world owes me a living” attitude.
Nations that reach this state don't stay at the top of the heap for long, and whether you are a believer or a non-believer, you have to realize the justice and common sense in the Bible scripture I quoted at the beginning of this column about if you don't work, you don't eat.
No matter how humble your beginning, no matter how trivial your job may seem, if you'll put the effort into it to do it better than anybody else, you're going to make yourself valuable, and somebody is going to notice you. The more responsibility you prove you're able to handle, the more responsibility will be given to you, and that's when the rewards start coming.
An entry level job is nothing more than a stepping stone, a training ground for people just entering the work force, to learn the discipline and regimen of holding down a steady job, a stepping stone to better things.
The only way you will ever advance in the work place is to prove yourself valuable by doing good work and practicing good sense, taking an interest in your job, no matter how humble, and proving that you've outgrown it and are ready to move on to more responsibility and more reward.
It's out there for you, or for those who are willing to be the first one to get there and the last one to leave, to do the best job on any project that's assigned to you, to always be on time, never complain and develop an "I'll do it" attitude.
That's what makes you valuable in the eyes of an employer, and if they don't notice you, somebody else will. Then you'll begin your climb, and where you go from there is up to you.
What do you think?
Pray for our troops and the peace of Jerusalem.
God Bless America
Charlie Daniels is a legendary American singer, song writer, guitarist, and fiddler famous for his contributions to country and southern rock music. Daniels has been active as a singer since the early 1950s. He was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry on January 24, 2008.