“I’m a full-time missionary, the company I work for just happens to pay my paycheck.”
How I admired the Christian businessman who shared these visionary words with me early in my career. He believed God had placed him in the marketplace to reach the people around him. The impact he was having was clear — and I wanted to be like him.
But sharing my faith at work seemed so daunting. He was an expert, a natural, and I was not.
Thoughts like these swirled through my head:
- Has God really put me here to reach the people around me?
- It seems like I’m the only Christian. It’s lonely and hard doing this on my own.
- I see these people every day. What will happen to our working relationships if I say something that offends them?
- I want to have an impact, but how do I start?
Do you resonate with any of these thoughts?
I was in a new job, the perfect opportunity to start new relationships. I asked the Lord to show me how to start sharing my faith at work. And the Lord answered that prayer.
Over time God showed me six things I hope will also help you get started sharing your faith at work.
1. Act Like Christ
The Bible is clear: we are to act like Christ in all we do (Titus 2). This includes approaching our work with excellence, as if we were working for the Lord (Colossians 3:23-24).
The goal here is to stand out from those around us through our character and excellent work. And in doing so we bring glory to God.
Unfortunately, I think this is as far as many Christians go.
I was guilty of this. My focus was on displaying Christ’s character in my interactions with my new co-workers. I hoped they would wonder what made me different and ask me about it.
If the opportunity came, I would be ready to share the gospel. But nobody ever asked.
Yes, our actions are very important to display Christ and build credibility with our co-workers. But let’s not think of this as the end goal; it’s just the starting point. The impact usually comes when we take it one step further.
2. Expect God to Use You
Most people think about work as a way to pay the bills. Some see it as a way to live out their God-given talents, and maybe even have a positive impact on the world.
But I was intrigued by the idea from my businessman friend that God called me to my job for a greater purpose. I wondered if work really could be more than just putting in my hours and honoring God with my actions.
In my searching, I asked my pastor for his perspective. He made a profound statement that reshaped my view of my nine-to-five environment.
“How do you know if God’s at work in someone’s life? The answer is, He put you in that person’s life.”
So God was at work in the life of my co-worker Mike, because my cube was next to his. And God was at work in Krista’s life, a peer running point on my biggest project. He was at work in my boss’s life. And the people I ate lunch with every day? God was at work in their lives too.
God intended to use me to impact these people.
When you believe God has put you in your workplace for the sake of His gospel, you won’t view sharing your faith as a surprising and rare experience. You can expect Him to regularly use you in the lives of your co-workers.
3. Share The Load With Others
Being alone as a Christian in the workplace can often be very hard and discouraging. For me, making a difference on my own in the lives of co-workers felt daunting and overwhelming.
One of my regular prayers was that God would provide another believer for encouragement, relationship and advice. “Even just one person will do,” I prayed.
But isn’t it like God to give us more than we ask for?
One day a friend from church introduced me to a man who also worked at my organization. “Hey, I meet weekly with a small group of believers who work with us and also go to our church. Would you like to join us?”
The group existed because these people wanted to bring Jesus into our workplace. They wanted our colleagues to hear the good news that Jesus was for them, not just for Christians.
So these six individuals met every week to provide solidarity, accountability, and prayer for intentionality in reaching co-workers. Meeting with this group catapulted me into an incredibly fruitful season of missional living at work.
God does not promise to always provide a large group of believers where we work. But why not pray for even one person to share the journey of sharing your faith in your workplace.
I now use MissionHub Communities as a tool for supporting these types of groups. Each member of the group can see the steps of faith the others are taking and so celebrate what God is doing.
I also participate in MissionHub Communities related to my family, as well as having one with my church small group.
4. Focus on a Few
Though we had aspirations of seeing our workplace transformed with the gospel, my group decided to start small. We each identified three people God had placed on our hearts. These were the people we prayed for individually, talked about as a group, and prayed for as a group.
Here are some questions to help you choose some people to focus on:
- Who are you in close proximity with on a regular basis?
- Are you developing a personal friendship with any of those people?
- Have you heard them speak about spiritual things?
- Are they open about difficulties they are going through?
- Have they engaged you in conversation about your beliefs and continue to be open to further discussion?
- Has God given you a divinely-inspired burden for them?
Focusing on a few helps us be attuned to the unique things God is doing in their lives.
5. Pray Like Crazy
Our group’s regular prayer was this: “Give me eyes to see, ears to hear, hands to help and a mouth to speak boldly.”
- eyes to see open doors for relationship
- ears to hear windows to the soul
- hands to serve and tangibly demonstrate love
- a mouth to speak the truth boldly, but always in love
Prayer aligns our heart to our Father’s heart. When we ask for Him to reveal where He is at work in our workplace, He will reveal those places and we will recognize them.
So every day I open MissionHub, review any notes I have captured for my three people, and pray for each of them. I ask God to give me eyes, ears, hands, and a mouth that’s ready to respond to His leading that day.
6. Take One Step of Faith at a Time!
Every person in your workplace matters to God. Every step of faith you take — large or small — counts. So focus on taking one step at a time rather than worrying about having a grand plan for sharing your faith at work.
Your steps of faith will change your workplace and you along with it.
The first time I met with my group, we shared what we wanted to see God do in our three friends’ lives. We discussed one step we could take toward each person that week.
These became steps I added into MissonHub for each person.
- Lisa: Pray for her heart. She was an atheist. My step was asking God to soften her heart to be open to future conversation.
- Rea: Learn her story. I was developing a personal relationship with Rea. I asked God to increase her vulnerability so I could see beneath her hard outer shell.
- Gus: Invite to music outreach event. After one or two spiritual conversations, I felt the Lord challenging me to invite Gus to an upcoming outreach event where we could talk more about faith.
That week, while taking a break from a project I was working on with Gus, I invited him to the event. He said yes.
Then the following week, Rea was flustered because she had a meeting overlapping with needing to pick up her son from school. I recognized the opportunity to serve her and offered to pick him up, which built trust between us.
A month or two later, after praying regularly for Lisa, she asked me out of the blue to pray for something very personal.
I saw God at work and knew I was a part of it. You can also expect God to use you in the lives of your co-workers if you step out in faith.
So what can you do now to begin taking steps of faith where you work?
- Download MissionHub and add three people you want to focus on.
- Choose one next step for each person.
- Create a community with other Christians to focus on your workplace, even if you all work in different places.
- Pray for your people.
- Tell your community what happens.
“Give me eyes to see, ears to hear, hands to help and a mouth to speak.”
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