by Kenneth Koh
I believe most of us have heard at least one sermon about how we are to be salt and light of the world, and especially in our realm of influence, being our respective workplaces. I believe all of us want to be Godly influences in our respective workplaces and be able to bring our colleagues to Christ through our lives.
The question is, “How?”
On top of just showing love, care and concern for people, what other ways can we stand out and be different in our workplaces to provoke people to want to know more about our faith and values? How do we share the good news without Bible-bashing our colleagues?
1. Doing our work with excellence, even when it is not required, even when it doesn’t pay
Most people see their jobs as a means to an end and not the end itself. What if we adopt an attitude of excellence in our work, even when we know that we will not be rewarded for it? People may not see the effort put in initially, but we can trust that God sees, and He will cause others to realise as well. Work for God and not your bosses… and when we are asked about our motivation, we can have the opportunity to share with others the reason for your actions.
2. Give credit where credit is due
In a world that is “every man for himself” and “survival of the fittest”, I have seen people take advantage of other people’s work, calling it their own, claiming all the credit (and promotion or bonus too!). It is so rare to find someone whom, when praised, says that they do not deserve the credit, but someone else does. Do this, and you will stand out and gain respect from your colleagues and superiors. Our job security and advancement are ultimately based on God’s favour and as Christians we know that all credit goes to Him! As we seek to honour him and others above ourselves, He too will honour us. This then becomes a testimony of our faith.
3. Stay away from gossip and crude talk
People love drama, especially in the workplace. It adds spice to the boring and mundane work. But no matter how harmless it may seem the result of gossip is always broken trust and hurt feelings. When we stay away from gossip and stop people from gossiping when it happens, I assure you that people will take notice. They will begin to trust you with their secrets, feelings and insecurities, and you can point them to Jesus. When we control our urge to swear or be unpleasant or unkind even if we hang out with people who do, we may stick out like a sore thumb at first, but people will begin to see the difference.
4. Be a blessing – one person at a time, one gesture at a time
You may not be able to buy everyone lavish gifts or treat everyone to a holiday. What you can do is to say a kind word of encouragement, to buy someone lunch, to help someone with their work, or ask someone how they are doing or feeling and taking the time to listen to them. This is what builds relationships. When you have built that bridge, then you can speak about Jesus and share the gospel with them!
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. – Matthew 5:13-16