Monday, March 26, 2012


How much are you praying at work? I was thinking about that question the other day. There's a lot for which you should be praying.

Be sure to
pray for your supervisor (1 Timothy 2:1-4). It doesn't matter whether you like him/her. God tells you to pray for those in authority over you.

Pray about the decisions you make (Joshua 9). That's not just the big decisions (although certainly you should be taking those to God. Pray for even the smallest decisions.

Of course, you should also be
praying for everyone around you that doesn't know Jesus (Matthew 9:36-38). Pray that God will send people (maybe you) into their lives to show them the way.

If there's something worrying you, pray for that also (Philippians 4:6-7). Know that your Father knows what you need.

It seems like an oversimplification to say that's a lot to pray for. Make prayer part of your work.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Finding Just the Right Words

A few weeks ago, my daily reading passage was Matthew 10 where Jesus sends out his apostles to tell the Judean people about Him. As He gives them instructions, one of the things that He says is "do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time, you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you." To be honest, I didn't think much about that particular passage at the time (it's verses 19-20).

Then, two weeks ago, someone came to me. This person wanted to talk to an unbeliever about Jesus but she wasn't sure what to say. I thought of Matthew 10:19-20. The context is different (Jesus was telling His disciples what to do when they were arrested), but I think the passage applied, just the same. After the conversation, this person felt she said all the wrong things, but as she described what she said and the questions the other person had asked, it seemed to me like she had said everything she should have said.

I think one of the biggest reasons that we don't tell others about Jesus is that we don't know what to say. I think another big reason that we don't tell others about Jesus is that we don't think about it. This person's experience reminded me about two things. First, sometimes I don't feel enough desperation regarding the people around me that need Jesus. Second, when I'm telling people about my faith, I don't need to worry about what I say--I just need to open my mouth and let the Spirit work.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Gentle and Calm or In Your Face

I was reading something today that really made me think about how we talk to others. In Matthew 17:24-27, Peter asks Jesus about paying taxes. Jesus first makes a comparison between earthly kingdoms and heavenly kingdoms. Jesus tells Peter where he can find money for the tax. But first, and this is what I thought was particularly relevant, Jesus says “But so that we may not cause offense…” Another version says, “not to offend.” In other places, Jesus emphasized treating others gently (Matthew 11:28-30 and 12:20). What’s interesting is that Jesus did not treat everyone gently. In Matthew 12, he had strong words for the religious leaders. He drove merchants and money changers out of the temple with a whip! Why were those circumstances different? Why was it ok to offend in some situations but not in others?

I think there is at least one difference between the times where Jesus is confrontational and the times when he does not want to offend that is relevant for us. When it comes to sharing God’s kingdom, Jesus is bold and unapologetic. When it comes to talking to people in day-to-day interactions, especially if those people are not in powerful positions, he is gentle and careful to not offend.

In terms of relating to us and to our workplaces, when you are telling people about your faith, you should be bold and unapologetic. When you are confronting something that is wrong (such as unethical business practices), you should be courageous and true. When it comes to other interactions, you should be gentle and look to not offend.