Marketplace Devotion 2016/05/29

Soaring above the workplace

John 16:33; 17:15-18

“I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.” (John 16:33, the Message)

“I’m not asking that you take them out of the world, but that you guard them from the Evil One. They are no more defined by the world than I am defined by the world. Make them holy – consecrated with the truth; your word is consecrating truth. In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I give them a mission in the world.” (John 17:15-18, the Message)

Are you still looking for the perfect job or trying to build the ideal company? Or are you slipping into indifference, perhaps even cynicism, as far as work is concerned? Over the years I’ve met disgruntled individuals in both camps, and many others in between. Most seem to think that work is a necessary evil. We avoid it if possible, or at least protect ourselves from it. Sadly, some Christ followers share a similar sentiment, more ready to point out problems than opportunities in their industries.

When Jesus told His disciples to expect difficulties in the world (i.e. daily life), He wasn’t just referring to religious persecution. He warned them that life would be hard, and the only way to come out on top was to trust Him as the Overcomer. Jesus was so sure of His promise that He asked the Father not to remove them (or us) from the world and place them in some heaven-on-earth enclave. Yes, the church can be a caring and loving community, but it’s not intended to shield Christians from the challenges of our marketplaces. Indeed, we have a mandate to go and reach out to people in all levels of society, showing them the ways of Jesus and leading them through renewal.

Jesus is not just calling you to evangelize your workplace. He’s encouraging you to walk in victory – at home, in church, at work and on vacation. Satan wants us to think that greed, anger, bitterness, injustice, exploitation and other evils are unchanging characteristics of the marketplace. He wants Christians to sigh in retreat, or perhaps put up with it silently. But our Lord says otherwise: It is a mess out there, but don’t worry. I’m with you. I’ll protect you. I’ll show you what to do and say. Stick with me and soar.

Reflection:

  1. Pray throughout the day. Welcome the Holy Spirit as your Partner @ Work.
  2. What complaints do you have about your marketplace? If you have none at all, say a prayer of thanksgiving for the people and situations you encounter.
  3. What changes would you pray for at work?
  4. How ready are you to be transformed by the Lord?
  5. Who are the people at work that keep bothering you? Bless them in Jesus’ name.
  6. Who are the people at work that keep blessing you? Give thanks for them.