I watched my client leave my shop after thanking me for a job well done. Then as usual I got puffed up and felt proud of what I had done. Then also as usual, Krishna put me in the right place by sending me the next client, a dissatisfied one, who went on complaining about something or the other. That put me off for a while.But it also set me thinking…Why do we work at all? (By work here, I mean occupation; the answer to the question “So…what do you do in life?”)More often than not, one performs, indeed struggles to work with the intention of getting appreciation/ fame or money. And just like we get some undesirable article as a ‘free offer’ with something we buy at the supermarket, similarly, along with fame and money, we also get mental stress, insecurity, disappointment, acidity and a horde of other undesirable ‘free offers’. But the difference is that one cannot refuse these ‘offers’; they are part and parcel of fame and money acquired through selfish, intensely driven efforts.Then, is fame and money bad and to be avoided all-together? No. Fame and money that obtained of its own accord, without the same being the goal of one’s work is acceptable and indeed may further one’s spiritual development.Then again we may be working for providing for our family, loved ones etc. But that too is not conducive to our spiritual progress. Because this motive stems from our identification with this false body; not realizing that our loved ones are our loved ones in this life only.Finally, we may be working in the mode of goodness i.e. for the sake of work only, by finding satisfaction in the work per se, without any expectations. While this is better than working for materialistic results as described above, it still binds us to this material body and compels us to take birth again and again to enjoy its fruits.Then what should be the goal of our work? Towards whom must we perform our work as a service?Simple. The Supreme Absolute Truth, Lord Krishna.We must work as a service to Lord Krishna, to satisfy Him.Why? For a number of reasons:1. The Big Picture:What is the Ultimate Goal of Life? In many words, to make our life perfect by attaining the pure, loving devotional service of Lord Krishna. And how can this be achieved? In Lord Krishna’s own words (Bhagavad Gita 12.10), “try to work for Me, because by working for Me, you will come to the perfect stage.”2. The Karma Factor:Every occupation is fraught with some fault as fire is covered by smoke. Each action reaps some good or bad karma, which we shall have to suffer at a later date. Lord Krishna proclaims that the one who performs his duty without attachment, surrendering the results unto the Supreme God, is not affected by sinful actions, as the lotus leaf is untouched by water (Bhagavad Gita 5.10). Srila Prabhupada assures us that if one is determined to serve the Supreme Lord by his occupational duty in Krishna Consciousness, all the defects in that particular occupation are purified (Bhagavad Gita 18.48).Now the above two effects may not be directly perceivable by us, but I shall tell you a couple of other reasons/ effects of working for Lord Krishna that can be practically and immediately experienced by us.1. Stress Relief:Whenever we work for Krishna, leaving the results/ fruits of our work to Krishna, the entire stress of achieving success in our endeavor disappears. Just like the cashier described by Srila Prabhupada, who accepts the cash income for his employer. This cashier is not bothered whether the income for that day is up to the expected mark or not. Likewise, having surrendered our work and its fruits to Krishna, we are absolved of having earned so-and-so much or gaining any fame etc. We just have to try our best…and leave to Krishna the rest… :)In fact, because we are relieved of the stress and responsibility of the results, we are more relaxed, we can focus better on our work and be more productive, further ensuring our success!2. Smooth GoingOne marvelous feature about working for Krishna is that if we encounter any obstacle in our work, He always gives us the solution to the problem. And on occasions, where we feel all is lost, literally at the eleventh hour, the problem gets solved all by itself! It’s amazing!And then there has been an occasion when a project has not been successful/ or not gone the way I desired, which may have caused me disappointment at that time. But at a later time, on reflecting back, I have realized that perhaps whatever had happened was for the better. Either I’ve learnt from that episode and improved my efforts. Or that project was not worth taking up at all!3. The Bliss Factor:On the rare occasion, when I have been able to work entirely for Krishna, I have felt a glow, a certain blissful satisfaction, which cannot be compared to anything else. Which I cannot achieve when I work for anyone else including myself!And this thought brings tears to my eyes; the fact that Krishna Himself has given me the knowledge and facility to conduct my business, He sends me clients, He gives me the energy and skill to do the work for that client, He arranges for the success of my project, He arranges for that client to pay me AND as an icing on the cake, gives me blissful satisfaction as well!!In short, He does everything, I do nothing and yet, He makes sure that I get to enjoy all the benefits! How can anyone be so kind and merciful?!’Haribol!