Going Beyond Being a Witness at Work
As the Bible study was coming to an end, the time for requests and prayer needs was given to the group in a usual fashion. There seemed to be a consistent prayer from my friend who was an entrepreneur and owned a growing drywall company. He wanted to be a witness to Jesus in his work. Admirable, but something about that prayer in general always gets me thinking about the way we at times compartmentalize our devotion and focus of the moral influence we want our faith to have in our day to day.
I wonder if, like my friend, most of us are asking God for opportunities to share about Jesus in a time where we deem it "all clear" to speak his name in the work place? Or we are given the golden opportunity when a co-worker has a pressing need and your advice is enlisted and you suddenly are faced with the decision to pick up pieces of scripture or ideas you have ready and available to bring some thoughts and experiences about God into the mix to hopefully be a catalyst to change or comfort for them.
What I experienced in my twenties and what I feel I am dialing in more and more in detail as I round off my thirties, is the necessary practice of removing categories and spaces where I limit my world view or practice of being a person who has integrated the moral framework of the Gospel into all parts of my identity. In my young adult season, it was the constant battle to be the person I wanted others to see to match up with who I was desperately trying to understand on the inside. With mistakes, counseling, and the grace of the Holy Spirit approaching me again and again in my shortcomings, these external and internal spheres began to match up as I made the conscious effort to allow them to be whom God desired to shape as I surrendered my best ideas of who I am to be in certain categories of my life (alone time, friends, church, work, family, in the grocery store, online, traffic).
On this Tremendous Thursday, I appeal to you dear reader to not simply be "a Christian" at work while you remain apathetic to God in some other area of life. The tremendous step you can take is to allow the person you have agreed with God you that he is calling you to grow into to actually take shape more and more in every waffle square of your life. Allow the presence of grace and devotion to fill every part so that what you start to experience is the fullness of an identity that is consistent and persistent in every moment and arena of life. Nothing is more hurtful to the church when our moral affiliation doesn't match up with our everyday actions. That is too common in our world where the opposite is more difficult to see. That is a person who is steadily increasing in devotion, boldness, humility, and obedience in all areas of their experience and it can't help but introduce people to the gospel.
Can you imagine what that would do to your heart, your world, and your future if you could stand in full integrity before friend or foe and be that authentic self? Flawed yet devoted. Scarred but accessible by the Holy Spirit to work through you. Imperfect, but perfectly loved and on a pathway that discovers the life of abundance as you allow the ethic of mercy, justice, and love to direct your days.
A fellow alumni of my seminary was said recently in our schools publication;
"I'm not simply talking about 'how to be a Christian at my job.' I mean that beyond our moral influence in the marketplace, we should also channel our energy to make the world more just, more whole, more beautiful. Why wouldn't we want to do that?" - Meghan Easley
She makes an excellent point that when we go beyond our moral behavior modification level of faith, we discover that the integration of God in every corner of our heart brings the awarenesses beyond ourselves and into the world that we are called to witness to and love. Instead of a hap-hazard randomness of being able to share a verse in a work setting, we must see that there is a deeper work that we can be about that drives our attention and intention forward and more consistent.
Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.' -John 7:38
May we make the tremendous step today to not limit who we are in Christ to only certain conversations and conveniences. May we flow full of peace, love, mercy, and justice while we exhibit the qualities of a person who is unashamed and bold in who we are while knowing whose we are!
Keep Looking Up!