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CHRISTIANS IN BUSINESS Ways We Can Honor God in Our Work
Have you ever measured yourself against others by the job you had? I used to confuse job title with importance. I figured the long hours, massive responsibilities and an overwhelming to-do list were the measures of my value. If others did not appreciate my position, what I had, or how I did my job, I assumed they disapproved of me, which just made the situation worse. How many of you also desire the approval of others? When                I sought approval, I accepted the world’s labels of success and continued to chase my own significance. Caught in a spiral of idolatry,        I chased after more possessions instead of running toward God. Keeping up with the Jones’s can get us into more trouble than we might realize. If we continue to focus on what possessions will buy us, and the power they might bring us, we slowly replace God with stuff. Genesis contains an interesting example of the challenge to honor God in our work. It is the short yet impactful story of Cain and Abel. Their story is familiar, but if we step back from the details of Abel’s murder, we might see a struggle between worldviews. The text suggests that Cain had a heart for the harvest and Abel had a heart for God. This cosmic battle continues today. Are the fields we tend, the widgets we sell, or the paycheck we bring home more important than our faith and worship of God? This is upside down! God provides us with value. He created each of us in His image. If we are to honor God in our work, we should focus on pleasing Him in worship at the office—performing our work in accordance with godly standards and maintaining a stewardship perspective. Performing to godly standards starts with understanding God’s personality and working with the level of quality that honors His character. However, knowing God’s personality can be strenuous—it requires study, prayer and accountability. Therefore, I challenge you to grab your Bible and start reading it. Look for God’s character traits, start applying them to your work, and ask a friend to hold you accountable for the changes you make. Shifting your worldview is also crucial. Seeing possessions the way God sees them will dramatically impact your ability to honor God with your work. If you view your job, your employees, your paycheck, your car, your team, and everything else as blessings God has entrusted to you for a while, your behavior will change. These changes will show others that God has lordship over your life. As you work to honor God with a heart for Him rather than a heart for the harvest, you will influence others. They will notice the changes and may start to act authentically around you. You also may have the opportunity to share the Gospel and affirm their value through the sacrifice Jesus paid for them on the Cross. What if we shifted our attention away from Cain’s murderous act against Abel and focused on the root problem—not having a heart for God in our work? By adjusting our own behavior before jealousy takes over, before we replace God with our paycheck, we can witness and worship through our work. May God richly bless you and your business!
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