Terry’s Take… TIME: The Christian in the Workplace
In the last two blogs we’ve looked at our use of time.
Today we will look at how to model Christ with our time at work.
Remember…All work done well and for God’s glory is Christian work. This means we model Christ in the workplace best when we perform our work so well and with such a good attitude that we inspire others to desire to know and worship God.
Paul explained it like this: “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” (Col. 3:23-24)
Christians in the workplace should be motivated by our desire to glorify God and to inspire others to desire to know him. Work done well is uncommon, and it will be noticed by our colleagues and clients or patients.
God is honoured when the products we create and the services we provide are excellent, based on the simple values of care, competence, and consistency. We are to care about the welfare of our clients. We are to pursue a high level of competency to enable us to deliver high quality products and services. And we should be consistent in our pursuit of excellence.
Our Work is Also Evangelism
Those who don’t know Christ may be inspired to seek him. And those who have turned their back on the church and Christianity, perhaps due to a previous bad experience with other Christians, may be influenced to reconsider Christianity.
It is too common to experience other Christians in the workplace who talk the talk but don’t walk the walk. My sister recently said her husband was experiencing just that. They talk about morality and Christian stuff, but their work is lousy and their attitudes are poor. They may deliver poor product to the client or treat clients poorly or complain about their jobs or slander colleagues. Such negative behavior hurts workplace morale, undermines work relationships, and adversely affects clients.
Instead, we are called to serve our clients with excellence. The quality of a Christian’s work and attitude should be different from the quality of work and attitude of those who don’t know Jesus. We are working for him, and therefore our work should be good. Clients should be able to clearly see the quality and value of our goods and services.
In their excellent book Your Work Matters to God, Douglas Sherman and William Hendricks write:
“The key to bringing the culture and the church back together, to renewing the workplace and reforming the church—may well be a movement of people who are known for their hard work, for the excellence of their effort, for their honesty and unswerving integrity, for their concern for the rights and welfare of people, for the quality of the goods and services produced, for their leadership among coworkers—in short, for their Christ-likeness on and off the job. What could an army of such workers accomplish?“
Doing excellent work with a good attitude is the right thing to do, and it is an excellent way to let our light shine on a hill so others may see it.
Questions for personal reflection, online discussion, or small groups:
- Read Col. 3:23-24 again. Who do you consider your boss? How can you work for that person as if working for the Lord?
- What does it look like to “love your neighbor” when your neighbor is a coworker, employer, customer, patient, student, or client?
- How can we accept responsibility for doing good work with a good attitude, without rationalizing our way to workaholism and burn out?