October 17, 2019
“AND WE KNOW THAT FOR THOSE WHO LOVE GOD ALL THINGS WORK TOGETHER FOR GOOD; FOR THOSE WHO ARE CALLED ACCORDING TO HIS PURPOSE.” —Romans 8:28
How does the God of the universe speak to His crawling creatures on earth? I believe God carries His message through His people. I will never forget a co-worker’s statement, “I am not retiring, I am repurposing” as it echoed through the office. This was the answer you received from Ruth if you too had asked her how she felt about retiring. Ruth and I’s time together at work intersected for only a moment as she retired just a couple of weeks after I started the job. Even so, her simple but powerful statement reverberates in my life to this day. At the time, God was moving in my life. He wasn’t just rearranging my life, but He was “repurposing” it. The layers of lies the enemy had instilled in me were slowly being peeled off as God refined me with His truth.
I believe God is always working to redeem what was lost to its original state. This includes work. If we are to be the extension of God at the workplace, then we need to redefine what work means. Let’s look at work through two different viewpoints:
World’s viewpoint of work: What you do defines who you are.
God’s viewpoint of work: Who you are determines what you do.
Now that we’ve distinguished the difference, let me state a fact, “What you do is always competing to become who you are.” Every day I fight the battle to not let my job and my career determine my value. Often, I find my worthiness regulated by the quality of my performance and the status of my career. It is in our human nature to let our identity adapt to what we do to become who we are. Although, when we find Jesus, we find the very purpose of who we are and why we were created. We are created to worship the living God and that means we work as worship, not as worth.
Repurpose who you are:
You are not an engineer who happened to be a follower of Christ. You are a follower of Christ who have been blessed with the gift of math. Your workplace is your church, your engineering colleagues are your congregation and you are the pastor. You are to be the shepherd to those who you work with through love and service. To love them beyond the project and to serve them beyond the 9 to 5. Your relationship with your colleagues is not solely based on performance but it is based on the biblical truth that they are made in God’s image.
Repurpose how you view your workplace:
Every day we gather inside a four-walled building as a community set on a mission to provide an employer a service through our skills and talent. This is very much like a church. Although, many of us never view our workplace as a church. I believe the biggest church gathering happening today is taking place at work. It’s perhaps the only common ground where people from all walks of life come together as a community. In this community we are reminded that all people are merely human, facing many challenges and life difficulties like any community in an actual church.
Repurpose how you view your colleagues:
Corporate America has subconsciously instilled in our minds to leave out our personal lives before entering its doors. We are to become less human and more programed machines with our sole purpose to perform. This only suppresses our emotions and thoughts leaving us chained in shackles. If this is the environment and the culture that is being cultivated at your workplace, then God wants to redeem it to cultivate an environment and a culture of freedom. This is our mission as believers. To step in and free people through the love and hope of Jesus.
“I am not retiring, I am repurposing”, Ruth wasn’t retiring because her job never defined her life. We are not our jobs, we are Christlike, we are a chosen race, we are a royal priesthood, we are a holy nation, we are a people for God’s possession to proclaim the excellencies of Him, we are called out of darkness and into His marvelous light. This is who you are. Now go and do what you are called to do.
Written by Fadi Kamel