I was watching a video titled The Monday Shift through our Right Now Media @ Work membership by Doug Spada’s organization Worklife.org. He pointed out that our first job each week is to thank God for Monday and he referenced Philippians 2:13-14 (Good News Translation)
“because God is always at work in you to make you willing and able to obey his own purpose. Do everything without complaining or arguing.”
I heard it said one time that Jimmy Johnson, who was a successful college and NFL head coach used to say that he always tried to coach his players with positive terms. Rather than saying “Don’t fumble!” he would coach the players to, “Hold on to the ball!”
Often we make the mistake of focusing on the negatives. We tell ourselves or others to stop eating or gossiping but we don’t tell them what to do. I was listening to the Daniel Dilemma by Chris Hodges and he talked about the importance of worship. We worship God when we do what he tells us to do. Our workplace isn’t out of his control. Therefore, another way to think of the command in Phil 2:13-14 comes from James 1:2:
Consider it all joy my brethren when you encounter various trials (New American Standard)
Consider it a sheer gift, friends when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. (The Message)
Rather than grumble and complain, let’s express gratitude to God. We can worship God for our challenges and pet peeves at work or anyplace else. I confess consistent struggle in this area. My natural reaction is to complain and grumble. But when I can take my thoughts captive (2 Cor 10:2-4) I praise God for the hard things, I begin to notice his work. He is there. He is working. When I complain, I take myself out of the game, but when I praise God, I stay in the game, ready to take part in God’s work.
Today, I want to stay in the game. Step 2, after I’ve checked in with God and asked for direction, I thank God for my assignment, whatever it is, Monday, or hump day or Friday, or overtime. I want to consider it a sheer gift.
This post is part of a series about how we can live daily as a full-time minister. The first 2 posts are Why are We Here? and Ask for Direction. We serve the people we work or live around. That’s our full-time ministry and we must lead differently in the world than we do in our church buildings. Leadership for us comes from following Jesus. Follower of One is a community where we work on that together. Find out more here.