Discussing ministry in the workplace – “Whatever your passion is, that’s your vision”

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Our senior pastor has been preaching a series on ‘church without walls’ but I hadn’t thought about it a great deal in my own daily activities.   I had thought about it with respect to reaching out to local community and outside of our church building but let me explain what I mean.

Recently some friends of ours at church were unwell and the wife had been in hospital.  I received a call from our church office asking if I’d be willing to make a meal for their family.  I accepted quickly and was delighted I’d been asked.  Whilst I’ve been involved in leadership and departmental activities I’d never been asked to take on a pastoral role like this one before and I was thrilled at the prospect.  Such a simple thing to do but it means so much to those who have need.   For me it was a short-term commitment and because I was home and available, it was easy to organise.

When I delivered the meal I didn’t want to stay long and intrude on the family but I was invited in to chat with the husband and wife for a time. They were delighted to see me and very grateful for what I’d brought them.  They asked me how my business was going and I told them about some recent events that had taken place.  And then Janet said something that I later repeated to my husband and didn’t fully comprehend until I said it.  She said ‘Some women return home to escape from the outside world.  You returned home to reach the world’.

Graham and I discussed this and he said he felt that Janet often had very insightful comments.   It is true that through my business, my writings and through speaking at churches and seminars that I have reached many, many people and yet that had not been my goal or my intention when I first came back home to work over 14 years ago.  I was fed up with the corporate world and was anxious to be home for our 5 daughters.  But God turned that into something far beyond my dreams.  All those years of experience, trial and tribulation have brought with it lessons I can share with others.

As mentioned above, our senior pastor has been preaching a series on ‘church without walls’ and I can truly say that through my working at home, and in sharing with and caring for others online I have truly reached out beyond my own walls.

As you are reading this right now it means you have internet access.  How many people do you think you can reach and touch through the ministry that God has planned for you?

Matt 7:7 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. (NLT)

More and more I get this ‘urgent’ need to write – something that has entered my mind and won’t go away.  I should really know by now that it’s a prompting from the Spirit, shouldn’t I?

On my VA blog this week I wrote a post about ‘what you think about, you’re drawn towards’ and it was about being focussed on things that will help you towards your goal.  I’ve touched on that subject here before, when writing about The Law of Attraction earlier this year.

I was pleased with the post I’d written but didn’t receive as many comments for it as I have for others I’ve written.  However, a couple of days later I received an email from a lady who was very nervous about making contact with a man who had asked her to ring.

She just happened to read my blogpost before making that call and it ended up being a very successful connection with her gaining a brand new client.  She wanted to share with me how that post had really boosted her and given her the courage and confidence she needed.  I realised afterward that I had indeed been following the prompting of the Spirit and written something that was intended for someone else.  I just love that when it happens!

Do you ever feel like you just can’t get it all done but you’re not sure what to do about it?  I’ve been like that lately, lots of stuff crowding in – work stuff. I love what I do but there’s so much coming at me lately that sometimes I feel like I don’t know what to grab next.

I get regular daily devotionals via email and also have a perpetual calendar on my desk in front of my computer monitor, with daily scripture and commentary.

Two of these bible messages and a chance question from a prospective client made me realise that God has been trying to get a message to me – I just needed to listen.

That’s when I had my sudden revelation, an epiphany. Here I am, a Virtual Assistant of many years standing and I own and run a network of VAs. But I was still trying to do everything myself!  It’s a matter of control and learning to let go and delegate.

A few nights ago I had dinner with a woman who was insisting that I look after her, rather than one of my team members.   She’d been referred to me and the person who referred her spoke very highly of my abilities. That’s all well and good but when you’re stretched to the limit, you really just want to be able to refer clients to your support team instead.

And then she said to me, after I’d told her for probably the 3rd or 4th time in a week that I just don’t have the time, ‘can’t you just manage it all and then get some of your team to do what you can’t?’. There it was… out in the open!  It kind of hit me between the eyes and I gave her question some serious thought later that evening.

And then I rediscovered a message that arrived the previous night and which only really could have come from God, well one of his messengers anyway.  I receive daily devotionals from MarketPlace Leaders (I get Volume 2) and this one is on Time Management. I’ll let you read it for yourself:

David accomplished a great deal in his lifetime. However, he also understood life had an end to it and he wanted to make the most of it. He learned to use his time wisely. And so should we.

Peter Drucker was a renown management consultant to major corporations and authored many bestselling business books. He suggested three activities that might help busy executives better manage their time.

“First, do not start with the task. Start with your time. Determine where your time is going. Then, attempt to manage that time and cut back unproductive demands on your time. Consolidate your ‘discretionary’ time into the largest possible continuing time units.

Drucker refers to the second step as time management. After listing the activities to which we devote our time, he suggests that we ask three questions about each of these activities to help us minimize the amount of time we waste: “What would happen if this were not done at all?” And if the answer is, ‘Nothing would happen,’ then obviously the conclusion is to stop doing it. Next, which of the activities on my time log could be done by somebody else just as well, if not better? What do I do that wastes my time without contributing to my effectiveness?*

Drucker closes by saying ‘Know Thyself,’ this old prescription for wisdom is impossibly difficult for mortal men. But everyone can follow the injunction ‘Know Thy Time’ if you want to, and be well on the road toward contribution and effectiveness.”

Why not evaluate how you are spending your time and ask God how to better use your time.

There was a message on my calendar too, which made me realise that God was planning on getting my attention!  ‘it is possible to give away and become richer! It is also possible to hold on too tightly and lose everything. Yes, the liberal man shall be rich! By watering others, he waters himself ‘. Interesting passage which is taken from Proverbs 11:24-25.

To top it off, this week has been an extremely strange one with lots of things happening that needed my urgent attention (like my web server crashing and needing to help clients, etc) which added to my workload considerably. Definitely time to hand over what I can to my team so I can concentrate on managing, rather than doing what others can do for me.

Our Pastor has been doing a wonderful series on ‘church without walls’. That is, ministry in the community, workplace, at home, anywhere outside the walls of our church.

He took us through a few challenging items this morning and I’ll share on each one in separate posts. Today I want to concentrate on Working With Honesty, and in particular, with our own energy.

He told us how, in the Australian economy, about $10billion a year is spent in dealing with problems caused by lack of sleep. That’s an astronomical amount of money. We were encouraged to think carefully about how much sleep and rest we get when we are not working. This relates to both employees, employers and the self-employed.

If we are not well rested and arrive at work having been up all the previous night at a party, or dinner, or something else, then it’s reasonable to expect we’re not going to be able to give of our best during the business hours. Our energy is spent and just not available.

When we arrive at our job or our business, our boss, colleagues and clients should receive the best possible service and performance from us. But frequently they don’t. We’re being paid under false pretenses and the company we provide a service to is getting inferior performance. Not to mention the problems that arise health wise from extended periods of lack of sleep and resulting accidents on the job or on the road. Just look at what happens with the truckies for example, if they’re doped up (pardon the pun) on drugs to stay awake so they can get their deliveries made.

So, are you getting enough sleep and rest at night and on the weekends so you can turn up to work on Monday fully rejevenated? Or are you letting your workplace down? Worth thinking about. If you’re ‘stealing’ the energy that should be available for your job you’re not only letting the workplace down, you’re also letting God down.

Let me ask you another question, before you answer the first one.

Are you a fulltime Christian?

If the answer to the second question is a resounding ‘yes’ then the answer to the first question should be the same.

And yet many people equate only those who work within church walls as being in fulltime ministry. This could not be further from the truth.

The senior pastor at my church has been preaching a series on ‘church without walls’ for a few months now. He has been teaching the congregation how important it is to take with us, as we leave the church building, what we’ve been learning and experiencing and sharing that wherever we go. We have been likened to a great big salt shaker, where God has sprinkled the shaker and each drop of salt has fallen in different places to add flavour to those we mix and mingle with.

Interesting picture that creates. It means that wherever we go on a daily basis, we are responsible for adding flavour to the lives of those around us. Can you truly say you add ‘good flavour’ or are you someone who leaves a bad taste in the mouths of those you have just parted company with?

 

About Author

John 5:17
Jesus said to them, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working."

My name is Kathie and I live in Melbourne, Australia. I grew up always knowing that God was with me and formally accepted Christ as my Saviour when I was 14 years old. I have had many experiences where God has been involved at my places of work and amongst my work colleagues.

A few years ago I heard the founder of Australian Christian TV speak - I don't remember a lot of his talk but I do remember one particular phrase that has stuck with me ever since. He said "Whatever your passion is, that's your vision" . It struck a chord with me and I realised that the very things that made me passionate are the same things that I do daily in my business, and through those things I know I touch many lives. I believe I am where our Lord wants me to be.

 

I've recently been reading Faith & Work: Do They Mix? by Os Hillman. Excellent book and it was whilst reading it, I got the idea for this blog - and was pleasantly surprised that this domain was waiting for me to purchase. I will be sharing what I've been learning through reading and research in the hope that it will also provide answers to your searches and prayers. Would love to hear from you. Bless you, KMT