We had a six-hour drive ahead of us. If I’d known what would unfold a few months later, I’d have wished that drive was twice as long. I was a young sales manager, and spent most of my time feeling in way over my head. Dan and I were driving from Denver to Casper for a few days of sales calls. Traveling with Dan was an experience; lots of coffee, not much food, and more meetings than any human should endure. But that day was different, we just drove and watched the plains of Wyoming drift by.
As we talked of past jobs, customers, and the latest in shelving technology the conversation switched from the unimportant to a place I never saw coming. Dan started talking about God, religion, and all the dumb Christians. In that moment, my life as a sales manager and my life as a Christ follower collided. I had no time to prep, no time to make a tract to give him, no time for a script. We talked for a long time about what Jesus really said, what it really means to give your life to him, and how it’s not stereotypical “religion”. Dan didn’t pray to receive Christ that day, but in the months that followed my dad would get to talk to him, and he and I would share similar conversations.
I wish I had known that it would be less than a year later that Dan would take his own life. Years of vices and pain would take their toll and end tragically. I’m not sure where Dan stood with the Lord, but I am constantly reminded that there is immense opportunity in the workplace to be a Christian, to share relationally in ways that are unique to business and careers. Without being Dan’s coworker, there was no way I would have had the opportunity to have eternally significant conversations with him. There are things I would do differently if I could talk to Dan again, but I trust that God knows Dan’s heart.
It isn’t always easy to live out your faith at work. Pressures for performance, to be task oriented and to get ahead at any cost abound. Yet, in only a way that God can do, he creates the opportunity for us to value performance and making money while living out Paul’s words in Colossians 3.
“Therefore, if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth”.
No matter where you spend your days at work; in your house, in an institution, or a company, the pressure to focus on the temporal will be overwhelming. To pass car rides talking about the NFL instead of on the things above. But God calls us to be eternally minded, even in the most temporal of circumstance.
My challenge to you is this: Be about the Eternal in everything you do at work.
See it as an opportunity beyond just a paycheck or a promotion. There are many ways to do this, but I offer you three ways to start.
- Be about People Not Tasks - You will be pressured to be about your task list and your goals. But, if in every interaction you have with a coworker you look for the chance to build a real relationship, God will use that relationship for His purpose.
- Serve Above and Beyond - In a world where a servant’s heart is rare, find 1 or 2 things per week to do to serve your coworkers. No strings attached, no hidden agenda. Be different even in simple ways.
- Make your prayer life part of your work - God will put people in your life for maybe no other reason than to have you pray for them. Lift them up to God. IF you’re living #1 above you’ll have specific things to pray about. How different will your interactions with that difficult person be if you spent the morning lifting them up.
I will never forget Dan, and the chance my job gave me to be in His life.
For the next few weeks through the MCC blog we’re going to explore what it means to live out our faith in the workplace. What an incredible opportunity to be agents of transformation for God’s Glory!
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The Women’s Serving Team is hosting a Mugs & Muffins event August 10th from 9:00 – 11:00am in the Fellowship Hall. Christine Leggett will be leading us in a discussion about the spiritual battle we each have with the desires of our heart. It will be a morning of fellowship, rich discussion and encouragement as we come together to study God’s Word. Praying you can join us. Don’t forget your favorite coffee mug! Please RSVP to Christine if you need childcare.
You can go on a mission trip and never leave Albuquerque. International Students Incorporated (ISI) helps international students when they arrive in the U.S. ISI has a chapter at UNM helping pick up students as they arrive at the airport, providing temporary home stays, helping find housing, English as a second language training and friendship partners. A new school year is getting started with hundreds of international students arriving at UNM. Please consider helping in one of the ways noted above. Alternatively, we will be providing lunch for students and volunteers on Wednesday, August 7 (signup sheets will be in the foyer). If you are interested in helping or just want more information please contact Vince Tidwell.
MCC’s Shine Partnership is hosting a dessert night Wednesday, August 14 at 7:00pm at Ashley Procter’s house! Current Shine volunteers, anyone curious about what Shine is, or those interested in becoming a Shine volunteer are invited! Contact Ashley if you have questions or need directions.
Save the Date: MCC Elders are hosting a 4-week Foundations Class starting September 15 and running through the first week in October. This class is designed to better help you get to know MCC - who we are, what we believe and why, and how to get connected. Please sign up with Sarah.