Don’t Play By the World’s Rules
This month, we’re talking about identity and worth. In today’s society, especially for women, are there two more loaded words? As Christian women in the workplace, we battle feelings of insecurity and unworthiness as we climb the corporate ladder, facing challenges that many of our male counterparts will never know. Outside of work we’re bombarded by images of perfect wives and mothers on social media, leaving us to feel like we’re falling short in every area of our lives.
But God did not call us to be His hands and feet in the workplace and then leave us doubting our security and worth. Through my 30-plus-year career I have had many ups and downs navigating balancing work, family and faith while staying rooted and secure in Christ. Here are a few things I’ve learned about how we can find the ultimate source of our worth at work.
God knows what we need – and He is in control.
As followers of Jesus, how are we to approach our work? Are we supposed to claw our way to the top regardless of who we hurt along the way? Do we play by the world’s rules to get ahead? Absolutely not. While God wants us to achieve the potential He has given each of us, God knows exactly what we need and wants to be the source of our security and worth. Earlier this month I felt unmotivated to travel to a meeting I was committed to attending until I opened my Bible for my daily devotions and found the topic was “opening my eyes to the significance of the cross.” God knew that was the exact message I needed for the day, reminding me that He was calling me to attend the meeting so others will see Jesus in me. By rooting myself in God’s word, the Holy Spirit worked in me to see the trip as something much bigger than myself.
If you’re feeling insecure or unworthy, root yourself in God and His Word. He will gently remind you that He has placed you in your sphere of influence for a reason and will give you what you need to fulfill your calling.
Grace is more important than achievement.
Everyone who knows me knows one of my Strengthsfinder strengths is “achiever.” That helps me successfully build organizations like 4word, but I sometimes struggle to give grace to those who have a different set of strengths. As I lead 4word staff and volunteers, I continue to grow in the area of extending grace to others. I have a lot more empathy for my co-workers than I did a few years ago. Just as it’s easy to fall into the trap of feeling not good enough, as followers of Christ in the workplace, we need to see others through God’s eyes and remember that He is working in them, too. We can love because God first loved us (1 John 4:19).
Our security and worth doesn’t have to come at the expense of others. By extending grace you will be a better example of God’s love to your workplace.
Our worth is ultimately found in Christ alone.
Leaving the corporate world was a humbling experience for me. No longer could I rely on the letters behind my name to give me a sense of security and worth. I had to learn quickly that my worth lies in serving God and others, not in what I can achieve for myself. God calls each of us to “use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms” (1 Peter 4:10). Even when other opportunities come across my path, God reminds me that He has blessed 4word and I can trust that He has placed me right where He wants me (Jeremiah 29:11). Because my worth is in Christ, I can confidently say “no” to doors that He hasn’t opened.
Regardless of your career or industry, your time at work is a God-given opportunity to help others find and know God. Accolades pale in comparison to the opportunity to be God’s hand and feet in your workplace.
The next time you feel insecure or tempted to play by the world’s rules to get ahead, remember that God has called you to live differently, and He will give you everything to achieve the unique calling you’ve been given.
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