Remembering the Why
(while embracing the Grind)
This time of the year does not always lend itself to closing deals, and completing world-class objectives, it is nonetheless an important time of the year. Last time we talked about becoming better at the basics that most everyone else. Perhaps you identified a few things that you would willfully work on in changing your habits so that the better you would become more evident.
I am discovering that too many of us have forgotten was it means to embrace the mundane things of life. We watch too many movies, read too many books, and play too many video games that revolve around a fantasy approach to life. In the past year I have met so many people that are trying to live vicariously the life of their perception of a Navy Seal. While there are many valuable life lessons we can learn from the Special Forces that serve our country, most of you are not now, and will never become a Navy Seal. The truth of the matter is that not everything these guys do is thrilling and exciting. Even SEALS had to be great at the mundane things of life. The one thing for sure is that they are still the best in the grind of the mundane.
In one of the most important and simple verses in the Bible the Apostle Paul wrote these words:
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed,
do it all [as unto the Lord],
giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
— Col. 3:17
This and the next couple of paragraphs of Paul’s letter to the Colossian church, he is teaching about the right attitude in our duties and responsibilities as both employees and employers.
A Christian worker ought to be the best worker on the job. We ought to obey orders and not argue. We ought to serve Christ and not the boss only, and we ought to work whether anybody is watching or not. If we follows these principles, we will receive our reward from Christ even if our earthly master (our boss) does not recognize us or reward us.
Not everyone loves their job. Too many people see their employment as an obligation and burden rather than an opportunity and blessing. What can we do to move people from complaining to celebrating? It is possible but only when we think about these three words:
Perspective changes everything. When we submit to the Lord with our heart we understand that He is Lord of EVERYTHING. Most of our complaining about our circumstances is the result our own personal demands. When we realize that God is the boss of us and that everything we do is in His presence we will certainly have a different perspective. Think about it this way. Every meeting you attend, every face-to-face conversation you have, every phone call you make, every customer or client with whom you engage is God’s assignment for you at that moment. Ask yourself the questions, “Did my conversation honor God?” and “Did that person see the love of Jesus in me?”. That’s a new perspective!
Persistence is always necessary. Not everything goes the way you have planned. Life is simple, but not easy. We are often distracted and driven by every wind that blows. When we realize that we work for an “audience of One” we will have the power to persist amidst the trials. Jesus told his disciples “Whoever the Father gives to me I will certainly never cast them out” John 6:37 (paraphrased). Even in the middle of the storms, be persistent knowing that we are never alone.
Passion will cause others to be impacted and influenced. When we perform our responsibilities with passion others will notice. Be passionate about your work. Put your absolute best into every aspect of your work life and your entire association will be impacted. Martin Luther King, Jr. said,
“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.”
Even in the mundane embrace the grind and remember to do all that you do as unto the Lord!