Sunday, April 28, 2013

Be Honoring in the Workplace

So, if you have not figured it out by now, I am a Christian. Ok so my secret is out! I don't apologize for it or hide it, but I don't try to rub it in people's faces either. To quote Popeye, "I yam what I yam!" So, On Sundays, at a minimum, I will post things with a spiritual focus. So let's step on some toes, shall we.

This article is truly convicting. Honoring God in the workplace. This is where a lot of Christians fail. We talk a good game on Sunday morning, but on Monday mornings, we fall flat on our faces, and I may be the worst offender.

This post over on the Desiring God Blog, one of my absolute favorites by the way, has me humbled. It discusses how to honor God in the workplace. Most people do not steal money, or computers, or office chairs from their employers, but they steal time and rob them of skills. Pastor John Piper gets to the point on integrity as he writes, "Be absolutely and meticulously honest and trustworthy on the job. Be on time. Give a full day’s work. “Thou shalt not steal.” More people rob their employers by being slackers than by filching the petty cash" Slacking. The word just sounds terrible. How many of us can honestly say that day in, day out we give a full day's work. Depending on your job, that may be easier than others. Working outside, in a factory, or a restaurant, the opportunities to slack may be limited. However, in an office, with Internet access, the temptation to slack is much higher and easy to do, and easier to hide.

This is where my ADD can get me into trouble. If I am not totally locked in on something I can lose focus and turn my attention to the next bright and shiny object that pops up. On a computer this can happen pretty easily. I am just checking the weather or the news and before you know it, I have chased a rabbit trail and now I sending a video on knitting a sock to my wife. It is that easy and it is stealing. 

Pilfering skills is another area. This can happen by slacking and not gaining skills as you should, or exploiting an employer to gain skills and immediately take them elsewhere. I would argue that both would be unbibilcal in the sense that our heart is not desiring to maximize our talents to the gain of our employers.

Some might argue that employers are no longer loyal to employees, so employees owe them nothing. I understand that sentiment and have learned it first hand. I was called, at home, three days after our fifth child was born to say that I was laid off due to some corporate re-structuring. That hurt, and as hard as it was, I went in a couple of days later and cleared out my office and handed everything off appropriately. That was one of the hardest days of my life. I had so many emotions flowing in my veins. I was filled with fear, anger, resentment, and confusion. Somehow, by God's grace I got through it, and so many people were amazed at how I handled it. For once, I did the right thing, but I still have so many things to work on to honor God in all that I do at work.

This is not a comfortable subject, but one that I feel needs to be addressed as God gets a bad name when Christians put in a bad day's work.

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