From his sermon “Of Our Blessed Hope” commenting on Titus2:13 taken from Pieper Vol. III Pg. 40
“Good works are not those which we choose of our selves, but those which God has commanded, those which our vocation calls for. A servant does good works when he fears God, believes in Christ, and obeys his master. First he is justified by faith in Christ, then he walks in faith, leads a godly life, is temperate and well-behaved, serves his neighbor, cleanses the stable, feeds the horse etc. In performing such tasks he does better works than any Carthusian monk. For since he is baptized, believes in Christ, and in assured hope is waiting for eternal life he goes on and obeys his master and knows that what he does in his calling pleases God. Therefore everything that he does in his occupation is a good and precious work.”
Hard not to have good works with that definition, but then with that definition it is almost equally hard to put your faith in the good works. This idea deglamorizes good works. It is easy to think that you somehow earned another rung on your ladder to heaven because you decided to go help people in Haiti instead of taking a cruise to Cozumel. And I’m not saying we shouldn’t take time out to do something for the people in Haiti. What I am saying is that when good works become things like husband and wife loving each other and showing that love for one another, or cooking a meal, or just going into work and doing what your boss asked you to, you probably won’t be inclined to think of it as a good work or anything extraordinary that somehow earns you a divine brownie point. And yet when you see your vocation, be it flipping burgers at McDonalds, as doing the work God asks of you, won’t the Christian also take a bit more pride in their work? Perhaps you learn to even enjoy your job a little better knowing that, in part, anyway you are doing it for God.