How to serve & experience God at work?
I used to think that going to a church on Sunday is the only best way to serve God and experience God’s presence. But do you realize that through your Monday to Friday job, you can also serve God and experience His presence? How can this happen?
In 2 Chronicles 19, King Jehoshaphat is initiating a reform in the land of Jerusalem. To do that, he appoints the judges throughout the land and tells them in verses 6-7:
Consider what you do, for you judge not for man but for the Lord. He is with you in giving judgement. Now then, let the fear of the LORD be upon you. Be careful what you do, for there is no injustice with the LORD our God, or partiality or taking bribes.
Here, the King tells the judges that they are not working for man but for the Lord. This means that the judges’ work in the land was more than a job or more than a means to make a living. The king reminds the judges that their work is actually for the Lord. So, in what way were the judges working for the Lord? They were working for the Lord as they were called to reflect and bring God’s character of justice and equity to the people of the land, as the king says, “for there is no injustice with the LORD our God…”
Working for God in Marketplace
This passage reminds us that our work is supposed to be a reflection of who God is. In Genesis 1:27, we are told that all of human beings are created in God’s image. This means that we are called to work in this world in a way that will reflect God’s images, characters, and attributes to the world. So, the king Jehoshaphat says that the judges should work in a way that reflects God’s character of justice to the people. By doing so, the judges were actually working for the Lord. They were serving the Lord as they were called to bring God’s justice to the land
What about our work? An accountant may bring God's justice by making sure all of the numbers on the clients' tax returns are reported accurately and truthfully. An artist may reflect God’s image by brining out the beauty of God’s creation. A business people may reflect God’s image by making sure the products they make are of a good quality, as God makes everything "good" and "beautiful" in creation (Gen 1-2). When our work becomes about reflecting who God is to the world, we are able to engage our work in a way that serves God by brining His reign to the world.
Experiencing God in Marketplace
So, how can the judges make sure to work for the Lord by brining God’s justice? The king reminds them, “He is with you in giving judgement.” In other words, the king was telling the judges not to make a decision based on human’s wisdom, but based on God’s wisdom. The king was telling them to rely on the LORD’s power as they are doing the LORD’s work.
In the same way, when we are working in the world, we face so many challenges in the marketplace. How can we meet these challenges as we are working by reflecting God’s images to the world? Well, the answer is by relying on God’s wisdom.
James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him.” At work, when I face challenges that are beyond my capacity, I close my eyes for 5 to 10 minutes and pray for wisdom. Sometimes, before I go to work, when I know the days will be tough, I spend an hour in prayer. God has been always faithful to answer the prayers.
When we work by reflecting God's images to the world, we can serve God through our work. We can also experience God’s presence and power in our work, when we rely on God’s wisdom to bring God's kingdom to the world. So, let us work for the Lord and walk with Him in our day-to-day job!