Check out the Faith in the Workplace Article in the August edition of the CPN (Christian Professional Network) Newsletter written by CBMC Regional Director, Chuck Whitmore.
See web site for the Business Excellence Seminar with Keynote Speaker, Dr. Tony Evans on October 21.
FAITH IN THE WORKPLACE
By Chuck Whitmore, CBMC Maryland
Many Christians see a tension between their faith and their work. For some, they are “Sunday-only Christians,” who think that faith is for church on Sundays and not for life in the “real world” during the week, and especially not in the workplace. For others, they feel unable to bring their faith into the workplace. Others sense a constant pressure to compromise their Biblical values at work.
But Christians are called to be Believers 24/7. This is not something that we do on Sunday morning then forget who we are in Christ Monday through Saturday! If we believe that is really true, then we must integrate our faith into the workplace.
So what does that mean; and how do we do it? Is it possible to be an ambassador for Christ at work, and if so, how can that be pursued? On June 25, 2010, CBMC President Lee Truax took questions to this subject on The Christian Worldview radio program, and shared his insights.
First, we begin with a Biblical view of work. Genesis 2:15 tells us that work is ordained by God from the beginning – God put Adam in the garden to tend and keep it! Deuteronomy 8: 18 tells us to always remember that it is the LORD who gives you power to get wealth. And most Christians are familiar with this often quoted passage:
Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve. Colossians 3: 23, 24.
So, if we are working “as for the Lord, rather than for men” would we not be reaching for excellence in all that we do? Christians should be the best employers and employees in the world. Our work enhances the picture of what we are speaking about Christ. In working out excellence, we should be creative along with hardworking, taking an active part in saving our employer money, and serving the customer in a way that is different from the world – all to the Honor of God.
And, if we are working with excellence, will that not be noticed by others around us? Then if we are noticed and are asked, what are we to say? 1 Peter 3:15 tells us to always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.
This verse then has two important and practical instructions about how to bring our faith into our workplace: (1) always be prepared; and (2) use gentleness and respect!
Being prepared is illustrated by the example of Dan Cathy CEO of Chick-Fil-A, when he spoke about customer service in his presentation to The Northern Maryland FCA Power Lunch on July 20, 2010. He used the phrase “go the extra mile” for the customer. It’s a well known, universally respected business principle, but Cathy explained that it is right out of the Bible!
In Matthew 5:41 Jesus said: If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles. Dan then explained that you meet expectations when you give a customer what is expected or demanded, but by going the extra mile, you will be providing a distinction that will stand out.
This is just one example of a man living out his faith at work. If YOU consistently went the “extra mile” for your employer, employees, and customers, would some of them ask you why you do it? And would you then be prepared to answer that question in gentleness and respect?
There is another reason why we need to be ready to share our faith at work: Studies show that today, only 20 % of Americans attend church. How are the other 80% going to hear the Gospel? For most of them, the most likely place to see a Christian is at work! If the people will not come to church to hear the Gospel, we as Disciples of Christ must bring the Gospel to where they are!
Matthew 28 tells us to make disciples as we go. We need to realize that we have “insiders status” in the business that God has placed us. It is up to us to be Ambassadors of Christ in our homes, in our neighborhood, and as we work and play!
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