One of the hallmarks of Christian living to the glory of God. This mentality is seen in 1 Corinthians 10 verse 31 as Paul instructs the church that no matter what they eat or drink, they do all to the glory of God. In context, this verse is about what is lawful to eat, but the principle of doing all things to the glory of God can and should be applied to every aspect of life. Some prominent Christian practices come to mind when thinking about glorifying God. For example, reading the Bible, attending church, and praying are standard practices that glorify God. But what about other aspects of our lives?
A Christian does not cease to be a Christian when they leave church Sunday morning. They are not a Christian only when they read the Bible and pray. They are a Christian when they are at the grocery store, at a mall, or watching a football game. But, most of all, they are Christian when they go to work. For most people, work takes up the lion’s portion of the day and week. Therefore, it is essential to understand how to bring glory to God in the workplace.
A Correct Mentality
Finding enjoyment in work
One of the hardest things to do in glorifying God at work is to have the correct mentality. Work is hard. It can be frustrating, exciting, and downright unpleasant. You could have co-workers or clients irritating you or a boss breathing down your neck. This leads to higher stress and dissatisfaction. It is a trap. It is a trap that leads you to wallow in your own unhappiness. So the fight to glorify God at work is to seek to enjoy work. The author of Ecclesiastes says it best:
Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot.Ecclesiastes 5:18
Though this may seem like a dour passage, its message is important. We have been given limited time on earth. Our days are set. We will not live longer or shorter than God has given us. God sets our lot. With this end in mind, we as Christians are to find enjoyment in our toil (work). This command is hard to apply because work may not seem enjoyable. But, at the same time, it is simple. Christians must make a choice to find enjoyment. When walking into work, we must remind ourselves that this is one of the limited days that God has given us, and it will glorify him if we find enjoyment in the work we are about to do.
To find enjoyment in our work, we must also fight not to grumble about our work. Philippians 2 makes this clear:
Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,Philippians 2:14-15
Like finding enjoyment in our work, choosing not to grumble about work is challenging. It is easy to grumble about work. Both significant issues, like a looming deadline, and minor issues, like the broken coffee machine, can lead a person to grumble. Though it may seem silly to complain about the coffee machine, it happens because the temptation is so small and seems insignificant. It is not, however, because we fail to glorify God in our grumbling.
By choosing not to grumble, we show ourselves to be different. We show ourselves to be children of God and serve as a light to a crooked and twisted world. This mindset, serving as light, is vital to glorifying God in the workplace. Most Christians work in a secular environment surrounded by unbelievers. By choosing not to grumble, you glorify God by being light among those unbelievers.
When looking back at my work, I see how often I fail to find enjoyment in my job and grumble almost every day. You may feel the same way. Yet, even in our failure, we can glorify God. We can repent to God, and in our repentance, we are forgiven, and grace abounds. Where grace abounds, thankfulness can abound, and in this, we glorify God. It is our task then to live out our repentance and go into our work, resisting the temptation to grumble and find joy in our work with the days we have left.