Many Christians think ministry starts after they leave work each day, but God wants you to transform your workplace.
If you hold a job outside your home, God has plans for you--and for your workplace.
It doesn't matter what kind of job you have or where you fit on the company totem pole. What matters is that you embrace your calling to transform your work environment by using the power that God has made available to you.
Perhaps you don't like your job. Maybe you can't wait to move up or move out. But don't let your current circumstances prevent you from seeing God's purpose for your life right where you are.
Everyone has to start somewhere. Joseph's starting point was the slave block in Egypt. Ultimately he ended up running the empire.
Daniel was enslaved and deported to a foreign land and then forcibly turned into a eunuch. Still he became the No. 1 person in Babylon in charge of all the affairs of state.
CHANGING THE SPIRITUAL CLIMATE Perhaps you feel underappreciated or overwhelmed. If so, take comfort in knowing there is someone who understands exactly how you feel: Jesus. At one point the Lord was so buffeted by discouragement that, in a rare moment of utter frustration, He demanded, "O unbelieving and perverse generation...how long shall I stay with you and put up with you?" (Luke 9:41, NIV).
The spiritual climate surrounding Jesus at that time was hostile--so much so that even John the Baptist's convictions were shaken. At one point Jesus' disciples became so angry with the circumstances that they wanted to call down fire upon an unreceptive town.
Even the Father became exasperated and had to rebuke Peter, James and John from a cloud. I doubt that your worst day on the job could be as bad as the one these disciples experienced when they were reprimanded directly by God!
In the midst of this negative climate, Jesus took positive action. He recruited a batch of 70 disciples and gave them specific instructions for sharing the kingdom of God with others.
First they were to speak peace to the people they encountered and fellowship with them--"eating and drinking what they give you" (Luke 10:5,7). Then they were to care for the people's needs--"heal the sick who are there"--and proclaim that the kingdom of God was near (Luke 10:9,11).
Because these disciples carefully followed Jesus' instructions, the demons in the area lost their toehold. Even Satan lost his position of power over the region. The spiritual climate changed so dramatically that Jesus was able to rejoice and praise God for all the good things that were going on around Him (see Luke 10:17-21).
Maybe the spiritual atmosphere in your workplace is as bad, or worse, than what Jesus experienced. But you can follow the same four steps that gave so much victory to the 70 disciples: blessing, fellowship, care and proclamation.
Let's take a look at the marketplace version of these four actions: joining the system, embracing it, improving it and bringing the kingdom of God to your job.
JOINING THE SYSTEM If you hold a job, you are already somewhere in the marketplace. It doesn't matter how undesirable your job is or how you got it. What is important is that you are in the system because God has a purpose for you to fulfill there.
For this reason, you need to make peace with your job by accepting it as God's starting point for you. Speak peace to it. Thank God for it.
You will always find plenty of reasons to be upset, even angry, at the marketplace in general and at your job in particular. After all, you live in an imperfect world and work in a marketplace that is under the control of the evil one.
But don't let the odorous sin in your workplace prevent you from introducing the sweet aroma of grace. Take a positive posture.
Joseph, Daniel and Esther had to make peace and accept situations that were not what they would have chosen. Yet they did so because they wanted God to be able to reveal His purposes for them.
Joseph had to forgive his brothers and overcome the bitterness which, humanly speaking, he was entitled to hold because they had thrown him into a pit and sold him into slavery. Daniel had to come to grips with the fact that he had been taken away from his homeland and stripped of his manhood. Esther had to love a king she did not choose and who had no affection for her people.
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