Monday, January 30, 2017


"For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread." (2 Thess. 3:10-13 NKJV)

Jesus probably spent most of His life working in His family's carpentry business. We know almost nothing of His youth from adolescence until He began His public ministry at about age 30. But we know that His father was a carpenter (Matt. 13:55) and that Jesus also practiced the trade (Mark 6:3). Carpenters worked with wood, metal, and stone to produce furniture and farm implements, and constructed houses and public buildings.
Jesus may have continued His occupation even after He began to teach and travel. Rabbis (or teachers) of the day commonly spent anywhere from one-third to one-half of their time working (most likely with their hands) to provide for themselves. And while Jesus' opponents, many of them rabbis, attacked Him on numerous grounds, they never accused Him of laziness or freeloading. Indeed, He was known to them as a carpenter.[1]
That reputation passed on to the early church. Paul tells the Thessalonians that anyone who has an ability to work should do so. It is God's mandate for every believer and is the place where we can best express the nature of God in everyday life.
Our work allows us to demonstrate integrity. Our work allows us to provide for our families and others in need. Our work allows us to often connect with non-believers. Our work allows us to live out His calling upon our lives. Our work allows us to experience His power in the midst of daily challenges. Our work can be a place of worship when we do it with a motive to glorify Him.
Today, view your work the way God views your work. It is your primary call.

Friday, January 27, 2017


But Paul shouted, "Don't harm yourself! We are all here!" - Acts 16:28

Paul and Silas had just been thrown into prison. An earthquake erupted and the jail cell was opened. It's Paul and Silas' opportunity. "Deliverance! Praise God!" might be the appropriate response. But this is not what Paul and Silas did. In fact, rather than leave, they sat quietly in their cell area. The guard, in fear of his life, knew that it would be automatic death if prisoners escaped. Paul and Silas did not leave because they saw a higher purpose for which they were in prison. They were not looking at their circumstance; they were much more concerned about the unsaved guard. The story goes on to explain how Paul and Silas went home with the guard and his family. Not only did the guard get saved, but his entire household as well.
What a lesson this is for us. How often we are so busy looking for deliverance from our circumstance that we miss God completely. God is looking to do miracles in our circumstances if we will only look for them. Sometimes as workplace believers we become so obsessed with our goals we miss the process that God involves us in, which may be where the miracle lies. What if that bill collector who has been hounding you is unsaved and he is there for you to speak to? What if a problem account has arisen due to something God is doing beyond what you might see at this time? Our adverse situations can often be the door of spiritual opportunity for those who need it.
I saw this personally when God allowed me to go through a number of adversities. It took some time, but I saw some great miracles as a result of those adversities. When God said that "all things work together for good for those who are called according to His purposes" (see Rom. 8:28), He meant all things. It is up to us to find the "work together for good" part by being faithful to the process. In the next adversity you face, tune your spiritual antennae and ask God for discernment to see the real purpose for the adversity.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017


..."What have I done? What is my crime? How have I wronged your father, that he is trying to take my life?" - 1 Samuel 20:1
The cost of being one of God's anointed can be great. Those whom God has anointed for service and influence in His Kingdom go through a special preparation. David was anointed to be the next king over Israel. Shortly after this, while still a young boy, he was brought into King Saul's service to play music in Saul's court. While there, the opportunity to stand up against Goliath elevated David for his next stage of development as future king. As his popularity grew so did Saul's jealousy. However, even Saul's jealousy was God's instrument for molding and shaping David.
Saul finally decided he could no longer tolerate David's success and popularity among the people, so he tried to kill David. The confused young shepherd boy spent many years hiding in wilderness caves before he was able to see the hand of God in all of this. No doubt David thought that when Samuel anointed him he would be conveniently raised up to be king with all the accompanying benefits of kingship. Not so. God's preparation of David involved much persecution, disloyalty, and hardship. These were the lessons necessary to be a godly king. God brought many tests in David's life, just as He did with Saul. David passed these tests. Saul did not.
When God anoints us, it often is accompanied by some severe tests. These tests are designed to prepare us for the calling God has on our life. Should we fail these tests God cannot elevate us to the next level. For a workplace believer, these tests often involve money, relationships, and other issues of the heart.
What if God has chosen you for a specific purpose in His Kingdom? Are you passing the tests He is bringing about in your life? These tests are designed to bring about greater obedience. In most instances, it will involve great adversity. The Bible tells us that the King of kings learned obedience through the things that He suffered (see Heb. 5:8). If this is true, why would it be any different for His children? Be aware of the tests God may be bringing before you in order to prepare you for His service.