The Five Rules of Spiritual Engagement at Work
For many of us, connecting work with spiritual life is an elusive quest.
A few days ago, one bold soul came forth and asked quite directly how I personally handled this dilemma of integrating my faith into the workplace. As if I were the expert.
Much to my surprise, I rattled off a five-pronged strategy, delivered with a great deal of authority and confidence. Perhaps I have actually learned a thing or two over the past couple of years.
So, without further delay, here are a few tricks that keep me spiritually engaged at work. Maybe they can help you too.
1. Know Your God-Given Strengths.
At work, we unfortunately tend to obsess about the things we are not good at rather than relishing in our wonderfulness. We can gain far greater leverage for spiritual growth at work by investing in and utilizing our strengths. Hide it under a bushel? No! Make a point to identify your super unique gifts and talents, because this is your God-zone.
2. It’s Not About You.
I always saw my job as something that revolved around me: my salary; my performance; my next promotion. But once you acknowledge that all your fabulous abilities come from God, it’s only natural to start thinking about how He might want to use them. Need a clue? It’s primarily going to be around helping other people. Your spiritual growth will come more from an attitude of giving rather than what you think you should get out of your job.
3. Surrender to the Greater Purpose for Your Work.
Framing your work around a higher, godly purpose is the beginning of subtle, but monumental shift that takes the focus off of you, and on to God working through you. Think of yourself as a tool. God’s tool. How mind-altering is that? It’s all about God tapping into your special gifts and capabilities to do good work, to help others, to do His will on earth as it is in heaven. By surrendering your purpose to God’s purpose, every project, task or strategy become part of an exponentially greater plan.
4. Get a Spiritual Partner.
We will inevitably face challenges that will cause stress and anxiety, threatening our connection to that greater spiritual purpose. It helps to have someone to count on for encouragement and advice. Share your work life with a friend, mentor, prayer partner – someone who will hold you accountable for your spiritual growth and help work through the complex, messy, gray circumstances that are not readily solved on your own.
5. Develop a Portfolio of Spiritual Practices.
It’s like a diet: You need one substantial meal a day, and lots of snacks. Those big meals are where you get most of your nourishment, and the snacks give you strength and energy throughout the day. I suggest you take a half-hour or so each day for a serious chill-sesh with Jesus, like meditation, scripture reading, or journaling to get your spiritual jump start. Then incorporate one or two spiritual practices throughout the work day. Look, this doesn’t mean that you have to burn incense in your office and chant during lunch break. They don’t even need to look spiritual. The point is to do something on a routine basis during the day that takes you out of the churn of business into a spiritual plane for a few minutes, to calm you, to reconnect with God.
Now that you know the Five Rules, it’s time to gear up and get spiritually engaged at work. Everyone around you needs to be reminded of God’s presence, through you.
Oh, and by the way, visiting The High Calling while at work counts as a spiritual practice. Just so you know.