It is important to have Wisdom for the Workplace. Nuggets of wisdom which you can take to your job, use them for yourself, or even give to others as an encouraging word. .
One Nugget of wisdom for the workplace comes from Luke 12:15: Jesus said Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed.
This greed problem is nothing new. And we certainly have to watch out for the many different kinds of greed. There’s greed for power, the drive to have authority and influence over other people. And greed for prestige and fame. Of course, greed for material possessions is very commonplace. Almost daily we hear of another scandal on Wall Street or in the government where greed for money has driven people to destroy their whole lives.
When you think about it, greed is pride. It is that desire within us to show the world who we are by our status in life, by our possessions, by our fame. Greed is a direct result of the pride of life.
Greed is contagious. If you’re around people who have lots of things and who focus their life on getting more and more things, you’ll discover that it’s very difficult not to be swept right along into that greedy mindset for things.
Greed is cancerous. It grows fast, and it consumes and destroys everything it touches. No wonder Jesus said we must be on our guard against all kinds of greed.
Jesus went on to say that a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. I don’t know about you, but I have to constantly monitor that greedy tendency. Greed can overtake us quickly and completely distort our priorities and our commitment to the Lord.
Jesus said life is more than food or clothes; life is peace and contentment. Those can’t be bought; they are found only in Jesus.
Our first Wisdom for the Workplace is: Be on your guard today against all that greed that surrounds you, especially in the working world. It wants to drag you right into its currents, but by God’s grace, you can be victorious.
The second Wisdom for the Workplace is: Remember that being tired is inevitable, but if you’re tired for the wrong reasons, then you need to take some action.
First, let me assure you that it’s okay to be tired. Jesus was often tired while he was here on earth. You remember when he went sound to sleep on the boat and a terrible storm didn’t awaken him? He was tired. We read in John 4 that he was tired from a long journey.
We know that Jesus understands our tired bodies and minds, because he experienced all of that while he took the form of man here on earth. He sympathizes with our weaknesses and the limitations we face. Just knowing that helps me a lot.
But we have to determine if we’re tired for the wrong reasons. Have you been trying to be all things to all people lately? That’s exhausting—and you can never succeed. Perhaps you’ve taken on jobs God never intended you to do, and you’re tired from trying to do too much. Maybe you’re trying to do everything to total perfection. Perfectionists are usually very tired people, trying to prove something to themselves and to the world by being perfect all the time.
You may be tired because you’ve got your priorities confused. Someone has said, "There’s always time to do God’s will," and I think it’s true that God would never ask of us more than our bodies and minds can do without going into overload and burn-out. But when we confuse our priorities, it causes weariness and exhaustion.
Remember this important message from Isaiah 40:29-30: Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Have you read that verse which says, "Be kind to everyone who is kind to you. Be kind to the people you like. Be kind when you want to impress someone, or when there’s something in it for you"? No, you haven’t seen that verse in Scripture, but Paul wrote to Timothy that, …the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead he must be kind to everyone… (2 Timothy 2:24).
The Third Word of Wisdom for the Workplace is: Be kind to everyone.
I once witnessed a situation where a Christian sister was obviously unkind to a person simply because she doesn’t like that kind of person. Based on her prejudices and some bad experiences she has had, she had classified a group of people as undesirable. And so, she was obviously unkind to this person.
My heart was hurt to see a Christian treat someone unkindly. Then I realized that I probably do similar things all too often. I mean, it’s easy to be kind to people that seem to deserve our kindness. But the Bible says we are to be kind to everyone. That includes strangers, people who irritate us, people who are not kind to us—everyone includes everyone!
Once I was unkind to a clerk at a hotel who was not very efficient at her job. Her lack of efficiency inconvenienced me just a bit, and though I didn’t say anything, I’m sure the look on my face and my body language was most unkind.
How easy it would have been for me to say something kind to her, to make her feel a little more comfortable, to forget my minor inconvenience and try to help her out a bit. The Holy Spirit hit me between the eyes as I walked away. The Lord’s servant must be kind to everyone, even people who don’t do their jobs as well as they should.
Where do you often fail to be kind? Shore that area up with prayer, and ask God to help you to be kind, as the servant of the Lord should be, to EVERYONE.
The fourth Word of Wisdom for the Workplace is: Don’t let anxiety or fear rob you of God’s peace.
Are you feeling anxious about something today? Are you very disturbed over a situation in your life? Does it seem impossible to find any rest and peace right now? A passage in Isaiah 48 is very helpful when you are not at peace. Let’s look at verses 17 and 18 of that chapter:
This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: I am the Lord your God who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go. If only you had paid attention to my commands, your peace would have been like a river, your righteousness like the waves of the sea.
Anxiety and unrest are often a result of our failure to pay attention to what we know about God. Rarely do we need some new truth or principle to help us out; we just need to practice what we know already.
I find that I rarely make a deliberate decision to wander from God’s principles. It’s simply a failure to pay attention to what I know already. My focus gets fractured. I move slightly off-center, simply because I haven’t paid attention like I should.
And when that happens, the results are loss of peace, loss of rest, anxiety, frustration. When you start to dig underneath those outward effects, you often discover that the cause is failure to pay attention to God’s commands. It may be something that seems very small, but if we walk away from doing it God’s way, we can expect to lose the peace and rest we so need.
The Lord told his people, "If only you had paid attention to my commands, your peace would have been like a river." If you’re missing peace in your life today, see if there’s some area where you’re not paying attention to God. Once you get that straightened out, that wonderful, marvelous, indescribable peace will return, like a river, flooding your heart and calming your nerves.
The Last Word of Wisdom for the Workplace is: The quality of your work reveals your character.
Did you ever realize that your work tells what kind of person you are? The Bible tells us that the works of God reveal to us what kind of God he is. The beauty of his creation, the majesty and grandeur of his universe give us a clear view of his character and his personality.
That’s true of us, as well. Just suppose someone who doesn’t know you at all was asked to write a description of you based upon an audit and inspection of your work. What would that audit reveal?
Are you careful to do your work with thoroughness, or would your work reveal a careless attitude? Does your work show that you are considerate of the person at the receiving end or at the next stage of your work? Or would the inspector conclude that you’re in a hurry to get through and get going, because your work is sloppy?
When your work involves dealing with other people, would it reveal an attitude of respect and concern for others? Do you think the inspector would conclude that you care about other people, and you treat everyone with respect? Or would it reveal a calousness toward others, treating them like numbers and not bothering to be kind and considerate toward them?
Could anyone tell by the quality of your work that you do it as unto the Lord? Would it look different from those who aren’t Christians?